World Police and Fire Games About to BeginPress Release
Let the games begin. That is, the 2015 World Police and Fire Games, an event that rivals the Summer Olympics in terms of competitors. The multi-sport biennial athletic event, from June 26 through July 5, is open to active and retired law enforcement and fire service personnel throughout the world. This year, Fairfax County in Northern Virginia, will host it.
Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Jeh Johnson appointed U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE’s) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Washington, D.C., Special Agent in Charge Clark Settles as the 2015 World Police and Fire Games federal coordinator. Settles is charged with overseeing the safety and security of the event.
"My job is to support the state and local agencies and to provide and coordinate federal assistance and resources when they have a deficiency and they require federal assistance or, of course, if a critical incident occurs during the games," said Settles.
In preparation, Settles has co-chaired the 2015 World Police and Fire Games National Capital Region Security Steering Committee with the security director, a representative from the Fairfax County Police Department, the lead agency. The Security Steering Committee includes more than 37 federal, state and local partnering agencies to include the U.S. Military District of Washington.
Settles said HSI special agents will help investigate any significant incidents or potential threats. DHS will provide tactical operations support, intelligence, air support, bomb dogs, training, technical equipment and logistical equipment.
Security detail for this epic sporting event includes being prepared for the thousands of visitors expected to converge on Virginia and the National Capital Region and more than 10,000 athletes from police, fire and other public safety agencies representing all 50 states and more than 60 countries worldwide.
Sports include traditional Olympic-style competitions, as well as events related to the job performance of public safety personnel in more than 60 major sporting categories at 54 different venues.
The opening ceremonies kick off June 26 at 6 p.m. at the Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium in Washington, D.C., where more than 40,000 athletes and spectators are expected to attend, and will conclude at Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts in Vienna, Virginia.
"This is an exciting and proud occasion for Fairfax County and the entire National Capital Region," said Settles. "We’re doing everything viable in terms of security to ensure the games take place without incident. Our goal is to ensure participants and spectators enjoy what they came here for – to see the games played in a spirit of excellence, competition and camaraderie."