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400 Local Police and Fire Officials to Conduct Active Shooter Training

Nearly 400 law enforcement officers and fire fighters will converge on State Fair Park Tuesday for a three-day exercise and training event coordinated by the Greenfield Police and Fire Departments. The training comes just a few weeks after a mass shooting at an Oregon Community College that killed nine people.

Law enforcement officers from different agencies will form teams and respond to a simulated active shooter event, neutralize the threat and establish safe areas. Once this is done, officers will escort fire fighters into the area to treat and evacuate the wounded.

“This training is unique because of the sheer number of agencies and people involved,” said Captain David Patrick of the Greenfield Police Department who has been planning the event for almost a year. “We know in our urban environment, multiple agencies are going to respond to an active shooter event and first responders arriving on scene are going to have to team up with people from other agencies.”

Patrick said the training gives officers and fire fighters the opportunity to work together and establish common tactics, techniques and communication.

Fire fighters entering the scene are part of a new Rescue Task Force (RTF) concept established in the wake of other mass shootings. Fire personnel enter areas considered a “warm zone” with armed officers covering them. The goal is to get medics to the victims as soon as possible and evacuate the wounded.

“With the mass shooting in Aurora, Colorado, we saw victims being dragged out of the area by police officers and transported to the hospital in squad cars,” said Jon Cohn, Greenfield Fire Chief. “Our goal here is to save the people that can be saved.” Cohn added that experience has shown that a number of people injured in previous mass shootings could have been saved under the Rescue Task Force Protocol.

Greenfield, Greendale, Hales Corners, Marquette University, South Milwaukee, St. Francis, State Fair Park, Wauwatosa, West Allis and Milwaukee County Sheriff law enforcement agencies will be participating along with Greenfield, Greendale, Hales Corners, Milwaukee, South Milwaukee, St. Francis and West Allis fire departments.

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