BLOOMINGTON (AP) -- The Mall of America and local authorities on Sunday night will conduct a large-scale emergency response exercise based on the idea that a bomb planted by terrorists exploded at the mall.
There will be fake smoke, two fake deaths and 28 fake injuries.
It will be the largest emergency exercise in the mall's history and the first to test response to a terrorist act. About 120 fire, police and emergency personnel will participate.
The mall will not be evacuated, but customers will be kept away from its south side, where the incident will be played out. While stores close at 7 p.m., bars, restaurants and movie theaters will stay open.
After the Sept. 11 attacks, law officers and elected leaders came to believe the megamall would be a likely target in the unlikely event that terrorists focused on Minnesota.
"I would probably rank it as the No. 1 symbol of America within Minnesota, simply because of what we stand for, our lifestyle, our way of life," said attorney William Michael Jr., former terrorism coordinator and national security coordinator for the U.S. attorney's office in Minneapolis.
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