NYC synagogues train for mass casualty events

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QUEENS — The Ner Mordechai congregation, formerly known as Sharre Tova, is preparing for the worst case scenario.

Ever since the Tree of Life Synagogue shooting in Pittsburgh in October, synagogues across the country have been training for how to respond in case of a mass casualty event.

There have been active shooter drills and self-defense training. Self defense expert Avi Abraham has been leading the training with the congregation in Kew Gardens, Queens.

“[It’s] to stay alive,” said Abraham. “Nobody wants to die. If somebody tries to threaten your life, you have to stop it.”

The congregation held three different simulations of scenarios that they believe they could encounter. A number of the congregants were trained on Sunday.

“We hope we never have to use it,” said Mike Zavurov, a congregant who received training. “But we are prepared.”

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