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Blue Ridge, AZ; On Saturday, August 9, 2014 Coconino County Sheriff’s Deputies, Chevelon Butte Elementary School District personnel and school bus drivers, United States Forest Service Law Enforcement Officers, Blue Ridge Fire District personnel, and Coconino County Sheriff’s Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) members participated in a training scenario that simulated an armed intruder (also known as Active Shooter training) on a school bus with student passengers.
The goal of the exercise was to instill in school bus drivers and involved law enforcement officers the knowledge, skills, abilities, and mindset necessary to successfully respond to an active threat event. The training was designed to focus on the roles, responsibilities and interagency coordination of responding officers and school bus drivers. Active Shooter situations are unpredictable and evolve quickly. Typically, the immediate deployment of law enforcement is required to stop the shooting and mitigate harm to the victims. Because active shooter situations often last 10 to 15 minutes, school staff members must be prepared both mentally and physically to deal with an active shooter situation while law enforcement responds to the scene.
Linda Blosser who is the President of the Governing Board for the Chevelon Butte Elementary School District requested that the training be provided to district school bus drivers and was instrumental in the planning, organization and implementation of the exercise. Following the training Blosser said, ‘Our training event was a great success. As a small rural school district it gave us a chance to identify areas we needed to review and follow up with additional in house training. Chevelon Butte Elementary School District is being proactive, making sure our employees have received the training they need if an emergency were to happen on one of our school buses full of students. Safety is our #1 priority; our goal is to make sure every student and bus driver go home at the end of the day. The cooperation we received from the Coconino County Sheriff's Office has been great. They shared their time and expertise with us, and may I say it was an eye opener. When I asked, ‘what do we do if an emergency happens on one of our buses?’ a small army of several law enforcement agencies being led by the CCSO drove out and ‘role played’ with us for a day.”
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Media & Public Contact: Gerry Blair, Coconino County Sheriff's Office, 928-226-5089