NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) - The Navy must be prepared for everything when it comes to security threats.
This week, the focus is on waterfront attacks. The Navy will conduct several exercises in the Willoughby Bay and Elizabeth River through Wednesday.
WAVY.com cameras got an inside look at the training Tuesday.
Typically, if an incoming vessel acts suspicious, Navy security will question the crew. Tuesday's drill was a lesson in what to do if that doesn't work. In rare cases, Navy security may need to shoot at a boat to get it to stop.
"We've got to be prepared for everything, so that is what we are trying to train for," said Capt. David Culler, Commanding Officer of Naval Station Norfolk.
In this drill, there were two players.
The "good guys" were the Naval Station's Harbor Security Boats, or HSBs.
For the purpose of the exercise, the "bad guys," arrived in a Rigid Aluminum Hull - commonly known as a RHIB.
The RHIB made several passes at Harbor Security, some horizontal, some vertical. But the beauty of the exercise is the Navy has time and resources to practice the passes again and again.
"That's how you get better," said Capt. Culler. "If you made a mistake, then you can put the same personnel back in the same seat and let them practice that again."
Another great tool is special laser equipment on the RHIB called MILES gear. The gear records the accuracy of the simulated shots from Harbor Security. It can pinpoint where the shots would have hit the threat.
The goal is to practice from every angle, so there are no surprises in a real scenario.
"So God forbid, if we have to do this for real, we are ready to go to protect the base, our assets and our personnel," said Capt. Culler.
The training will last through Wednesday. The Navy will hold similar events in the Elizabeth River near Pier 7 Wednesday and Thursday.
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