PORT HADLOCK — Naval Magazine Indian Island is one of four Navy installations to conduct its annual “anti-terrorism force protection exercise” beginning Monday and continuing through Feb. 12.
The training, called Exercise Citadel Shield-Solid Curtain 2021, is planned for weekdays between the hours of 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Navy spokesperson Liane Nakahara said in an interview.
In a press release, the Navy noted local residents may see and hear “training smoke,” small explosive sounds, increased response vehicle activity on nearby roads and increased vessel activity on the water near the participating installations.
These sights and sounds “are part of the training exercise and pose no safety risk,” the press release said.
In addition to Indian Island, Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Naval Station Everett and Naval Base Kitsap will be involved, and “there may be times when the exercise causes increased traffic around bases or delays in base access due to temporary gate closures.”
Jefferson County military veterans who drive to Naval Base Kitsap to visit its Exchange stores may be affected, Nakahara said, though the Navy tries to minimize that.
“We work with the Navy exchanges and commissaries to figure out what the peak times are for people coming in, and they try to not schedule gate closures during those times,” she said.
The Navy also notifies local law enforcement and first responders of their training plans.
“This important annual exercise is designed to ensure Navy personnel are at peak readiness to deter and respond to potential security threats,” the press release noted.
“This regularly scheduled exercise is not in response to any specific threat, but it is based on realistic scenarios designed to increase readiness.
Jefferson County senior reporter Diane Urbani de la Paz can be reached at 360-417-3509 or durbanidelapaz@peninsula dailynews.com.