Emergency services tested in major Gold Coast counter-terror exercise

Emergency services have taken part in a major counter-terror exercise on the Gold Coast.

Queensland Police, Queensland Ambulance Service along with Government agencies took part in the exercise overnight at Main Beach.

Over 300 people were involved in the operation to test the capabilities of emergency services to respond to critical incidents and improve the working relationship between various agencies.


Gold Coast District Acting Chief Superintendent Dave Cuskelly says it was a chance to put local frontline officers through their paces.

“These exercises provide us an opportunity to test our tactics and skills which Police maintain as a matter of routine in our duties,” he said.

“We’ve got a broad cross section of people involved, it’s not a specialist capability training, in effect it is that first response those men and women in uniform and plain clothes you see day to day.”

The training operation was based around an armed threat with dozens of people playing the roles of victims and bystanders.

“The way (officers) interact with those people and the methods they use to move through that scenario is what we really tested.”

Acting Chief Superintendent Cuskelly says it was important to use a public space for the exercise.

“We need to use the local venues because there’s a lot of by-products that fall out of that, they become familiar with the venue, they become familiar with the people they’re responding to.”

Police insist the exercise wasn’t held because of any impending danger to the Gold Coast.

“It’s important to note there is no contemporary threat context around the timing of this exercise, it just forms part of our planned regional exercise schedule to make sure that we are prepared in the event anything like this did happen.”

“Also importantly, the national alert level around counter terrorism remains at probable, it has done for some time,”

“But it’s a great opportunity to remind members of the community that if they do see something they’re not comfortable with or see something suspicious, report it through methods such as the National Security Hotline or of course if it’s occurring now Triple-zero.”