RRHS students participate in Public Safety Integration training
|Rio Rico Medical and Fire District (RRMFD), Santa Cruz County Office of Emergency Management (SCCOEM) in conjunction with Integrated Community Solutions to Active Violence Events (ICSAVE.org) conducted Public Safety Integration training with the help of Rio Rico High School students.|
ICSAVE volunteer Bruce Whitney, who, with more than 30 years experience in military and public safety, coordinated the training. Whitney is one of many professional volunteers who teach and train emergency preparedness across Arizona. After a recent shooting involving the AMR ambulance crew, Tucson Fire Department and Tucson Police Department, local agencies reached out to ICSAVE for training.
First responders from around Santa Cruz County, representing fire, law enforcement, and customs and border protection participated in the two day training. Day one of training included classroom instruction, while second day activities provided responders an opportunity to put learned skills into action. Scenarios included bomb and mass shooting situations.
According to Whitney, the activities are designed to train professionals to work together in the event of an emergency. The focus is “to get into areas, such as schools quickly to both stop the killing and actually stop the dying. In order to do that, firefighter unit professionals will have a security escort, (and) law enforcement will provide a layer of protection while they are rendering aid to patients.”
Theatre, JROTC and law enforcement students were invited to participate in training as wounded and non wounded victims. Theatre students also participated as victims and used their makeup skills to apply moulage. At the sound of Hollywood gunfire, students would spread out in teams and hide in different rooms waiting for responders to find them. Hollywood ammunition is typically used during the training because it is louder and more intense sounding.
Law enforcement officers were responsible for providing a clear and safe path for medical responders to attend the wounds and move the victims. Once found, medical responders would assess and treat wounds utilizing integrated point-of-wound care skills.
Students were instructed to role play and react as they would in the case of a real emergency. “This provided a realistic aspect, students are incredibly vital to the success of these trainings,” said Whitney. Students could be heard crying, moaning, some were unable to walk because of their assigned wound.
Darlene Lara-Cordova pretended to struggle against medical attention in an attempt to conceal a weapon. Darlene is a Law and Public Safety student who has plans of going into law enforcement. “I would like to enlist in the military and do school at the same time and study criminal justice. I’m looking forward to becoming a Border patrol agent and getting experience and would love to transfer to the FBI after that and become a Special agent.” When asked how the exercise helped her future plans, she said,”this has helped me to understand a little more about what law enforcement agencies are actually about.”