Friday, Dec. 30, 2011 | 12:17 p.m.
Nevada National Guard Sgt. Mike Getten will be in town during the New Year’s Eve weekend for a training exercise that will raise the city’s security levels while celebrants raise their glasses.
“I booked rooms for my guys months ago,” Getten said.
That’s quite a few rooms, as more than 100 Nevada National Guard troops will spend today through Sunday completing drills that will give the soldiers and some airmen an opportunity to work in tandem with local law enforcement, Getten said. The troops will be gaining experience in securing areas, working with computer technology and maintaining communication, among other skills.
“It’s an exercise we do annually,” he said. “It’s the best time for us to be there.”
The Guard’s presence will also act as another safety measure in case of any emergency situations.
“The National Guard are always at the ready,” said Getten, adding that the exercise is not being conducted because of any specific threat to the state.
"It's real routine," he said of the training exercise.
One aspect that’s been added to the mix in this year’s training are air guards, Getten said. Added helicopters crews will be on standby for the three-day weekend.
“You’ll see more uniformed personnel around town,” Getten said. Troops will be stationed at McCarran International Airport and various locations around the Strip.
With the increased number of visitors, various agencies including Metro and the Nevada Highway Patrol have increased the number of responders.
“Local law enforcement have ramped up some of their activities as well,” Getten said.
It’s a convenient time for both the Guard and the local authorities to get acquainted, interact and practice working together, Getten said.