ATF Training

By: Erica Hurtt
By: Erica Hurtt

Rockford's Cunningham quarry is transformed into a battlefield as the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms trains local law enforcement

Terror attacks have become a virtual reality across the globe. Now more than ever local law enforcement needs to be trained on the latest threats and technology in bomb detection and investigation.

A series of bomb blasts rock the Cunningham quarry. High power explosives detonate, firewalls explode and door blasts echo off the rock walls. It looks like a war zone, but it's just a federal training demonstration for stateline law enforcement.

This exercise teaches the 35 students how to recognize the color, sound and even the feel of different explosives. Fortunately, local law enforcement rarely deals with actual bombs while on duty, but that fuels the need for this training.

Most of the explosives used Wednesday are military or commercial quality, but these materials are often stolen and used by terrorists.

Investigators, police officers and firefighters came from all across northwest Illinois for the training school. The event is sponsored by the Rockford Police Department and runs all week.


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