First Responders Prepare for Active Shooter Scenario at S-C
Eight area agencies, including the Sedalia 200 School District, will take part in an active shooter training exercise Monday morning at Smith-Cotton High School.
S-C school resource officer, Sgt. John Cline, said participants from agencies such as the Pettis County Sheriff’s Office, Sedalia Police Department, Missouri State Highway Patrol, Sedalia Fire Department, Pettis County Ambulance District, Pettis County Fire District, and Sedalia-Pettis County Emergency Management Agency will take part in the exercise.
35 staff members from Sedalia 200 are serving as volunteers for the event as crisis actors and role players.
Sgt. Cline said that Mrs. Teri Turner, head of S-C Theater Department, and some of the students will apply makeup to the crisis actors to help simulate injuries. He added the volunteers will have a specific role and then, "it will be the responsibility of public safety entities to come in and address the situation," describing it as the formation of a rescue task force. Cline noted that students will not participate in the exercise, other than to help apply make-up beforehand.
Sgt. Cline said one of the goals involved in the fictitious active shooter event is to "bring together the different disciplines of public safety together and test process, plans, and procedures in case the worst should happen."
Cline considers the event "low probability but high impact."
The training exercise stems from a multi-disciplinary tabletop session that was held in April. Cline said that session was "solely on paper" but helped to pre-plan and eventually form specialty groups.
He estimates about 50 emergency responders will take part in Monday's training exercise. There will be a minimum of ten law enforcement personal, which includes line officers and administration. It is expected that nearly 25 Fire Department personal will be involved and over 20 medical personal.
Sgt. Cline emphasized that commuters will see emergency vehicles going into Smith-Cotton High School on Monday morning, but residents should not be alarmed. People in the area may hear the sound of 'blanks' from firearms, but Cline stressed "they are not live rounds. We are doing our best to simulate what an actual event would look like and it may be a bit loud and smoky. It will look pretty real but its not."
Safety is a priority for Cline and he said everything is "well covered."
Emergency vehicles will be staged near the area but Cline does not anticipate any traffic issues. He added that the intersection at Tiger Pride Blvd and Highway 65 will not be blocked.
Sgt. Cline thanked the community for the support and said area emergency crews, "are doing our best everyday to detect, deter, and defeat these types of events."
The training simulation will take place Monday, July 9, from 8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.