OGDEN, Utah – The Weber State University Police Department and other local law enforcement agencies will conduct a training exercise in the Miller Administration Building on the Ogden campus, Jan. 13.
The exercise is designed to help the campus police department be better prepared in the event of an actual emergency on campus. The planned scenario also allows officers from different agencies to practice communication and coordination efforts during a multiple-jurisdiction emergency response.
“We’ve spent a lot of time developing and updating our emergency response plan at Weber State,” said WSU police chief Dane LeBlanc. “The reality is no emergency response plan is ever complete, you have to continue to do table-top exercises and drills to test and improve your plan.”
Campus police have several goals for Tuesday’s exercise. The university will assess the evacuation plan for Miller Administration by having all personnel vacate the building at the start of the drill. While the personnel are at lunch, the WSU, Ogden City and South Ogden police departments, along with Ogden City Fire Department’s Engine 5, will respond to a simulated shooting incident. For the purposes of the exercise, responders will have to extricate the injured while attempting to locate the “gunman” and secure the area. The officers also will take part in an “active shooter” drill during this part of the exercise.
At 1 p.m., building personnel will be allowed to return to their offices. The first floor entrance and northwest corner of Miller Administration will remain offline so campus police and the Ogden Metro SWAT team can conduct additional exercises associated with a hostage situation.
During the exercise, campus police plan to send a test message using the new Code Purple emergency notification system, to evaluate the effectiveness of that communication resource.
The entire exercise is a drill for a potential crisis university officials hope never occurs.
In an effort to minimize undue worry or concern about all the first-responder vehicles on campus, the university plans to publicize the drill extensively through e-mail, voice mail, media and web communication channels.
Following the exercise, the agencies will debrief and evaluate how they handled the various scenarios.
“This is a chance for us to exercise our plan, assess our performance and identify areas that we can improve,” LeBlanc said. “It’s an excellent learning opportunity.”
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