The University of Toledo Police Department and the Office of Recreational Services will conduct a training exercise Saturday, March 30, to test the response of campus law enforcement in the event of a violent intruder within a University building.
The active shooter simulation will take place from 8 to 9:45 a.m. inside the Student Recreation Center on Main Campus. The training is scheduled to be complete before the Student Recreation Center opens at 10 a.m.
Similar to other active shooter training exercises University police have conducted, campus safety officials will test first responders’ communication, response and scene management. This exercise, however, also will test the response of more than 70 staff and students who work in the Student Recreation Center.
“We’ve been doing active shooter exercises for many years, and we continue to build upon previous experience,” University Police Chief and Director of Public Safety Jeff Newton said. “It’s an opportunity for officers to train in their response to an active aggressor and also for the students and staff to train in their ALICE principles.”
ALICE, which is an acronym that stands for alert, lockdown, inform, counter and evacuate, is a national program that instructs participants on how to survive an active shooter situation. The University regularly offers ALICE training to students, faculty and staff; go to the University Police ALICE Program website.
Many of the staff and students participating in the March 30 exercise have undergone ALICE training. Demond Pryor, director of the Office of Recreational Services, said it is important to provide training that readies students for a variety of situations.
“We feel it is our responsibility to prepare our students for potential incidents in our facility and to increase their awareness of how to respond to an incident in the community,” Pryor said.
Signs will be posted that say “UToledo Police Training Event” around the Student Recreation Center. In the event of a real emergency, the public address and UT Alert systems would be activated to inform the campus community that a dangerous situation is occurring and to stay clear.
Regular police training exercises are a key part of the University’s mission to ensure a safe campus environment.
“It’s important for every location to prepare,” Newton said “We’ve seen that no location is immune to this type of violence. Churches, movie theaters, shopping malls, workplaces and schools are all potential targets for an aggressor. It’s really prudent for everyone to train. We want to ensure we’re providing the safest environment possible for our students and staff.”
To learn what to do in the event of an emergency and for more information on the University’s emergency preparedness plans and procedures, visit the emergency preparedness website.