Active shooter exercise tests 128 ARW

  • Published
  • By Senior Master Sgt. Kristen Stanley
  • 128th Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs
A deranged shooter opens fire on random victims; a headline all too familiar these days. Active shooter events are a real threat but there are ways to prepare for a response.

Service members and staff of the 128th Air Refueling Squadron conducted an active shooter exercise during their regular scheduled drill weekend at 
Milwaukee, Wisc., Aug. 12, 2017.

The exercise tested and evaluated the emergency management skills and 
operations of the 128 ARW when responding to an active shooter event.

Planners with 128 ARW Inspector General team designed and executed the active shooter scenario and evaluated the participants response.

"This active shooter exercise is a realistic and effective way for the 128th 
Air Refueling Wing to prepare for a violent incident." said Capt. Lee Russell, lead inspector for the exercise.

An active shooter is an individual actively engaged in killing or attempting 
to kill people in a confined and populated area, typically through the use of firearms. Victims are selected at random and the unpredictable event evolves quickly.  Law enforcement is usually required to end the situation.

"Through these exercises the 128 ARW members continue to train and gain awareness of what to do during an active shooter event." said Russell.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security provides tips on how to respond to an active shooter situation through a 'Run, Hide, or Fight' campaign.

When an active shooter is in the vicinity the first option is to run. Leave 
behind all your belongings and use the best pre-planned escape route that will keep you concealed from the shooter.

Second option is to hide. You will want to hide in an area out of the shooter's view, attempt to block any access to that hiding area and silence electronic devices.

As a last resort and when your life is in imminent danger; fight.  Attempt to incapacitate the shooter.  Act with physical aggression and throw items at the perpetrator.

Calling 911 when it is safe to do so will activate local first responder 
support.  It is important to remain calm and follow instructions when law 
enforcement arrives.

The 128 ARW security forces members were quick to identify and neutralize the simulated active shooter during the exercise.

"Threats of violence require that all personnel know how to take quick action to save lives." said Col. James Locke, 128 ARW commander.

At the closing of the exercise evaluation Locke ended by saying, "The 
knowledge and experience gained today is valuable for the preparation and improvement of our installation emergency management program."