Advertisement

Archive for Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Emergency drill at KU tests responders’ preparedness for the worst

Crisis response team members gather in the parking lot east of Memorial Stadium for instructions before heading to a simulated hostage and active shooter scenario during a training exercise on Wednesday, May 23, 2012 at Corbin Hall on the campus of Kansas University. The KU Public Safety Office organized the training exercise, which involved all Douglas County law enforcement agencies.

Crisis response team members gather in the parking lot east of Memorial Stadium for instructions before heading to a simulated hostage and active shooter scenario during a training exercise on Wednesday, May 23, 2012 at Corbin Hall on the campus of Kansas University. The KU Public Safety Office organized the training exercise, which involved all Douglas County law enforcement agencies.

May 23, 2012

Advertisement

KU Police Train for Crisis Situation

KU Police Chief Ralph Oliver talks about a simulated training exercise in which local law enforcement responded to a live shooter and hostage situation at Corbin Hall. Enlarge video

Baldwin City police officer Caleb Lewis questions Meghan Smith, a volunteer with Specialized Emergency Response Training (SERT) who was playing the part of a witness, Wednesday in the parking lot outside Corbin Hall on the Kansas University campus. Smith’s character was handcuffed during the moments when her involvement with the simulated shooting at Corbin was unclear. The training exercise was meant to better prepare officers for a real-life crisis situation.

Baldwin City police officer Caleb Lewis questions Meghan Smith, a volunteer with Specialized Emergency Response Training (SERT) who was playing the part of a witness, Wednesday in the parking lot outside Corbin Hall on the Kansas University campus. Smith’s character was handcuffed during the moments when her involvement with the simulated shooting at Corbin was unclear. The training exercise was meant to better prepare officers for a real-life crisis situation.

Area police officers and medics took part in a nightmare scenario Wednesday on the Kansas University campus.

As part of the public safety exercise, two shooters had wounded people outside Corbin Hall, a residence hall for women. Three officers were wounded inside. One suspect took hostages inside a room.

More KU police and Douglas County Sheriff’s officers rushed inside armed with rifles.

“Obviously, we hope that nothing like this ever occurs at KU,” KU Police Chief Ralph Oliver said. “But it is my job to make sure that we are prepared and ready.”

It was an annual drill, although more involved than earlier ones, as Oliver said it required coordination among every law enforcement agency in the county, Douglas County Emergency Management and Lawrence-Douglas County Fire Medical.

KU spokesman Gavin Young said the exercise also allowed the university to test its alert system, which allows KU to send text and other messages to the campus in the event of a crisis or emergency.

“There’s value in practicing for any situation whether it includes an active shooter or whether it includes a hostage situation,” Young said.

Oliver said the scenario raised stress levels for the officers.

At one point a man in a green shirt fired blanks from a handgun at two officers just outside Corbin, 420 W. 11th St. Oliver said the “shooters” were officers from outside agencies.

“Even though they know it’s a simulation, they know that in a real situation they will be required to perform in a manner that they’ve been trained to do,” Oliver said. “It allows them to see how they perform. It allows us to see how they perform.”

The exercise lasted for several hours, and some circumstances did not match the real thing, he said. There wasn’t the noise of sirens and other commotion that would come. Also, the residence hall was empty so no students came running or screaming from the building.

Things also happened slower than they would in a real situation, he said. At least two people who were “shot” outside Corbin laid on the sidewalk for several minutes before it was determined the area was safe and secure for medics to arrive.

Oliver said the scenario is valuable for supervisors as they seek to smoothly coordinate with one another and review strengths and weaknesses of the response.

Other than KU public safety officers, agencies participating included sheriff’s officers, police officers with Lawrence, Eudora and Baldwin City and Lawrence-Douglas County Fire Medical.

As they prepare to respond to dangerous situations, university officials seek to learn lessons from past events, like the 2007 Virginia Tech massacre in which a gunman shot and killed 32 people on campus.

“With Virginia Tech there have been numerous reports and papers written on how they responded and how universities should be looking at what we should have in place should something like this occur,” Oliver said.

Comments

ibroke 1 year, 11 months ago

flea party is the occupy wallstreet nuts they live in tents and draw fleas

0

ibroke 1 year, 11 months ago

looks like they are getting ready for a flea party protest

0

foggydew 1 year, 11 months ago

"At least two people who were “shot” outside Corbin lied on the sidewalk..." It's lay, you idiots, unless the people were bearing false testimony. Get an editor.

0

begin60 1 year, 11 months ago

Police power abuse is the the worst emergency much KU students will ever face--especially given the dishonest HR has these yahoos in their pockets. Backwoods conflict--of-interest and might -is- right rules. The KU cops I dealt with were despicable liars. The only thing that protects their jobs is their rock-solid code of silence. Can you say citizen review board?

0

0day 1 year, 11 months ago

They look like military wannabes.

0

Flap Doodle 1 year, 11 months ago

Gotta be ready for when the "dude, I'm really angry" mopes start emulating that famed terrorist, Bill Ayers.

0

biggunz 1 year, 11 months ago

Never cease to be amazed by the amount of **shole comments by people. If something happened on campus, you all would be the first ones complaining about not being properly trained. Had they trained under more realistic conditions you all would be complaining that the noise scared your dog! There surely will be comments to come about how this was funded, where was police and fire protecting the city, George Bush sucks, screw Brownstain, etc.

0

Gotland 1 year, 11 months ago

That’s what this county needs. Gangs of high school dropout, wanna be Rambos armed to the teeth running around campuses. I feel safer already.

0

Bill_Slu 1 year, 11 months ago

Let this be a lesson for you bicycling scoff laws not wearing bike helmets! You will be met with superior fire power!

0

alcoholbliss 1 year, 11 months ago

"Back off Warchild, seriously" - Bodhi

"Yeah, I know man. Ain't it wild? That's what makes it so interesting. You can do what you want, and make up your own rules. Why be a servant to the law, when you can be it's master? " -"Bodhi

" Look at it! It's a once in a lifetime opportunity, man! Let me go out there and let me get one wave, just one wave before you take me in. I mean, come on man, where I am I gonna go? Cliffs on both sides! I'm not gonna paddle my way to New Zealand! Come on, compadre. Come on! " -Bohdi

Hope I've not ruined for you?.... Thought like this cheap, KUPD scenario I bet it ended in a bullet in ones own head, most do.

0

alcoholbliss 1 year, 11 months ago

what kind of idiot takes refuge and a female hostages inside a female dorm room unless they were shooting at dept of housing staff in the basement? ?Maybe a chase down K-10 , 59, 24, or I-70 would have been more appropriate. imo.

0

guppypunkhead 1 year, 11 months ago

I don't think they tested the text message system, because I didn't get one. :)

0

Commenting has been disabled for this item.