BioWar

After searching through the Google usenet archives and considering the events of 9/11, I thought this would be an appropriate time to republish something that I posted on usenet back on October 9th, 1999. Without further introduction...

---------------------------------------------------------------------

From: "Night Flyer" Subject: BioWar... for GMs 
Date: 1999/10/09 
Message-ID: <939481582.283276@linux2.intcon.net>#1/1

This was a special on ABCs Nightline all week long, and I managed to get a hold of some previews, I post this for all GMs out there as it makes for an interesting scenario idea. It consists of a biological attack on an imaginary city.

Nightline's BIOWAR is a special five-part ABC NEWS series about a terrorist biological attack.

FRIDAY:

DAY 1 - Biowar Series Begins

After today, the city will never be the same. As commuters leave work and children hurry home, a squad of terrorists launches a silent attack on the city. The weapon of choice is the Bacillus anthracis bacterium, anthrax, lethal at high concentrations. As terrorists throw bottles of the bacteria onto the subway tracks, tens of thousands of spores swirl into the air and infect the unknowing commuters. These commuters, who will soon be known as victims, head into the weekend, unaware that they are sick. And once they realize they have been infected with the bacteria, it is already too late.

It was a beautiful fall weekend and people tried to enjoy the last of the warm weather. By Sunday, however, a number of people started to feel sick. To some, the symptoms felt just like a cold. Most take over-the-counter flu medicine, but others head to their doctors. 

MONDAY:

DAY 4

Monday morning, three days after the attack, hundreds of people are now flowing into emergency rooms. By the afternoon, thousands are looking for help for their "flu" and at this time, hospitals do not know that most of these patients are infected with the anthrax bacteria. Neither do they know that anthrax has already taken its first victim.

Because of the abnormally high level of sick, medical centers are now sending samples to the Centers for Disease Control. By the end of the day, over 3600 are reported sick and more than 100 are dead from this mysterious "disease."

TUESDAY:

DAY 5 - Disease Identified as Anthrax

Reports about the deadly disease dominate the morning news. The death toll is rising -- 350 in the morning to 600 at mid-day to over 1,000 by evening. Over 10,000 people are sick and speculation and rumor are rampant. But by Tuesday afternoon the medical authorities identify the "disease" as anthrax. 

As people demand answers and antibiotics, the government struggles to keep order.

WEDNESDAY:

DAY 6 - Hospitals Overrun

With virtually everyone in the metropolitan area touched by the attack, the city is struggling to provide its citizens with basic services. People are dying at a furious rate...more than 500 every hour. Hospitals are overwhelmed and the morgues are having a difficult time handling the bodies.

The authorities are still trying to identify the attackers and even find the crime scene. But then a pattern begins to emerge -- all of the victims rode the subway last Friday. By evening, the number of sick climbs to 30,000 and the dead, 15,000.

THURSDAY:

DAY 7 - Over 25,000 Dead

It has been six days since the terrorists struck in the subway system. By Thursday morning the toll now stands at 25,000 sick and more than 25,000 dead. New cases are finally beginning to trail off. Yet the police are repeatedly being called out as crowds frantically break into any store that might still have antibiotics. The hospitals are still struggling to find places to store bodies before burial or cremation. And as the day comes to a close, the city is still trying to grapple with what has happened in the last week

FRIDAY:

DAY 8 - Nearly 50,000 Dead

One week after an anthrax attack, federal resources are in place. Antibiotics and the anthrax vaccine are arriving at a steady rate. By Friday night the death toll reaches 48,000, leading up to a final death toll of over 50,000. The criminal investigation continues, and basic services are being provided by the military. The city is in shambles and there is pressure to curtail some civil liberties to insure that this does not happen again.

---------------------------------------------------------------------

Copyright 1999 ABC News Internet Ventures.

Note: some editing of the original post have been performed, original post can be found here

Return to Resources