December 1 2015

Fire and Police Department Members Engage in Active Shooter Training

By: Rich Hosford

The following is a joint press release from the Burlington Fire Department and Burlington Police Department: 

Police Chief Michael Kent and Fire Chief Steve Yetman report that the Burlington Police and Fire Departments attended the sixth annual Advanced Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training (ALERRT) Active Shooter Conference last month.

The event was held on Nov.1-4 at the Embassy Suites Hotel and Convention Center in San Marcos, Texas. Some of the top instructors and presenters from across the country shared debriefs, best practices and lessons learned from various headline-grabbing incidents with attendees. ALERRT'S curriculum -- developed after the tragedy at Columbine High School in Colorado -- has become the national standard in active shooter response training for first responders.

Burlington Police Lt. Glen Mills, Sgt. Timothy McDonough and Sgt. Daniel Hanafin, along with Deputy Fire Chief Michael Patterson and Captain Andrew Connerty participated in multiple courses to expand skills and preparedness for a potential active shooter situation.

Police received certification in Civilian Response to Active Shooter Events, which is designed and built on the avoid, deny, defend strategy and provides guidance and a proven plan for surviving an active shooter event. Lt. Mills, Sgt. McDonough and Sgt. Hanafin will take the information and skills learned to further their free community presentations to businesses, companies and town organizations on workplace violence. Burlington officers have conducted this training for three years and have educated hundreds in workplace safety.

"Given today's culture, it is imperative that police are prepared for an active shooter event, as we have seen that no community is immune to this threat," Chief Kent said. "We are now well versed on how to disrupt, respond to and recover in the event that a violent incident, large or small, were to occur in town."

Burlington officers and firefighters also attended breakout sessions that covered comprehensive testimonials on recent active shooter events across the country, including incidents at schools, theaters, hospitals, public events, and a victim's perspective from the Virginia Tech shooting. Officials participated in:

• The Active Shooter Threat Picture

• International ISIL Threats to America

• Leading Joint Operations During High Risk Incidents

• Humans are More Important than Hardware: A Proven Organizational Approach from the U.S. Special Operations Community

• Integrated Response Overview 

• “Draw the Prophet” Garland, Texas Terrorist Attack Debrief 

• Shots Fired… Case Study of a Hospital Shooting at Scott and White Memorial Hospital 

• All Hazards Means All Hazards: The need for coordinated response to Complex Coordinated Attacks

• Homegrown Violent Extremism and Today’s Threat Picture: Case Studies and Indicators for All Emergency Responders

• ALERRT – Active Shooter Research 

• Police Response to the Aurora, Colorado Theater Shooting and the Integration of First Responders 

"We are constantly working toward refining our skills to be best prepared for emergency situations, like an active shooter threat," Chief Yetman said. "ALERRT'S annual conference gave our department the tools to tackle violent threats in our town from all angels by working with our law enforcement and community partners."

Find out more information on ALERRT'S training conference here. Learn more about the Burlington Police Department's free workplace violence training here.

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