For the first time, the semiannual emergency drill held Tuesday at the Indian Point nuclear power plant near New York City used a script that hinged on terrorism. The event involved more than 1,000 state and local officials in addition to the F.B.I., Norad and the White House. It challenged local governments to respond to a staged crisis that started around 8 a.m. and lasted until 4.
The possibility that a plane could crash into the plant has been a source of concern since Sept. 11, 2001, when a Boeing 767 flew over the plant on its way to the World Trade Center. During the drill, officials pretended to mobilize firefighters, dispatch helicopters and redirect traffic. Evacuations of parts of three counties were simulated. But to the disappointment of those who are skeptical of the plant’s emergency plans, there was no simulated leak of radiation, leaving many unconvinced of the drill’s effectiveness.