Officers to train for response to active shooters

By Xiomara Levsen, The JOURNAL

An Active Threat Integrated Response (ATIRC) course will be held in Ainsworth next week.

The course is being hosted by the Washington County Sheriff?s Department, chief deputy Shawn Ellingson said.

?There will be a lot of local officers going, a lot of EMS and maybe some fire departments,? Ellingson said.

Some of the people at the training will be from surrounding counties as well, he added.

The training will begin with a two-day classroom course at the Conservation Education Center in Marr Park May 1 and 2.

On May 3, an active simulation will take place at the former elementary building in Ainsworth.

According to a flier from the National Center for Biomedical Research and Training, the course is designed to improve the safety and survivability of victims in active shooter and mass shooting events. This will increase the effectiveness, coordination and resource integration between law enforcement, fire and EMS when responding.

?This is a Homeland Security event similar to a school or large areas,? Ellingson said.

A few years ago, the trend was to wait for backup before going in to get the shooter, he said. That isn?t the case anymore. Unless you have backup coming within seconds the first officer on the scene should go in and neutralize the threat to prevent more people from getting injured.

Once the shooter is isolated, EMS and fire are to come in to treat the victims as soon as possible.

?The people who have died from these situations were bleeding out,? Ellingson said. ?The goal now is to get medical treatment to the people as soon as possible.?

Ellingson said he hopes this gives everyone at the training a basis of what to do if something like this were to happen in our area. He also hopes the training helps with the line of communication between officers, EMS and fire departments when responding to an event.