BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (WTHI) - Indiana military and law enforcement came together for one cause Wednesday.
The Indiana National Guard hosted search and extraction training in Bloomington, Indiana.
The Indiana National Guard, Indiana State Police and several other Hoosier organizations were on scene training for one purpose, a search and rescue operation exercise that simulates tornado damage.
That's what has civilians and military alike joining together in southern Indiana.
The exercise revolved around a scenario where an EF 5 level tornado hits Indiana.
That'd be similar to the real one that struck Joplin, Missouri two years ago.
Staff Sergeant James Hammock took part in the simulation.
"It's been really good because people were able to get some operational experience instead of notion," said Sgt. Hammock, U.S. Air Guard, 19th CERFP.
Take a look at the demolished buildings in the video.
It's eerily similar to damage we've seen across the Midwest after a tornado sweeps through the area.
"Its a dangerous area to train on. It also gives you a good operational experience because of that danger and that inherent danger when you move things, other things move," said Sgt. Hammock.
The collaboration between the different organizations has been a major help.
"That trade-off has been, it's really meshed really well," said Sgt. Hammock.
Over 50 EF 5 level tornadoes have hit Indiana since 1950.
An EF 4 level tornado struck Henryville, Indiana last spring.
And that's exactly the kind of place Hammock says they're usually deployed.
"Smaller communities is kind of where we train the most because they don't have all the resources. So we force multiply for those communities," said Sgt. Hammock.
And according to Hammock, the experience has been invaluable.
"So to be prepared for that I think it gives our citizens and community a little bit of, a little bit better feeling that at least there's help on the way. Trained personnel outside of just their fire department," said Sgt. Hammock.
The Israel Home Front Command National Search and Rescue Unit also joined the scenario today.
The Indiana National Guard said their insight into techniques and tactics has been invaluable.
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