Emergency preparedness drill held at Northwoods Mall

By Chad Weber

September 15, 2013 Updated Sep 15, 2013 at 10:24 PM CDT

PEORIA, Ill. -- Peoria Police prepared for a worst case scenario Sunday at Northwoods Mall.

The police department held an emergency preparedness drill, shutting down half of the facility for several hours.

The drill included scenarios of bomb threats and armed persons inside the mall.

Both the police department and mall officials said preparing for these kinds of threats is necessary.

"There have been instances at other malls across the country," said Lieutenant Steve Roegge of the Peoria Police Department. "It's one of the things we're just doing to work in cooperation with the mall management to make sure in case there is an incident here, we are prepared for it."

"We don't anticipate anything happening but our shop for safety is at the top of our list for importance and we want to make sure everybody is prepared for any incident that could happen," said Director of Business Development at Northwoods Mall Bob Schertz.

Police said it is also important for the 35 officers taking part to familiarize themselves with the mall's layout.

The police department plans to conduct the drill again in the future.

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