By Shannon Murphy / News Editor
During Spring Break, the LAC will host an active shooter drill.
The drill will take place all day on Wednesday, April 23. The Long Beach Police Department’s juvenile investigation section will be facilitating the drill. It will involve all on-duty officers as well as the Long Beach Fire Department. Some surrounding law enforcement agencies will be invited to attend.
Esmeralda Aguilar, 19, an English major, said “I think it’s a good idea. There have been a lot of school shootings.
Students should be prepared just in case of a situation like that.”
Employees and students will be invited to participate as role players. Employees must have their supervisor’s permission. Students may volunteer to be role players by calling (562) 938-4807.
Role players can stay for all or part of the drill. A mandatory briefing is planned prior to the drill where role playing guidelines will be discussed. The role players will need to wear comfortable clothing and shoes. Soft-air pellets will be used during the drill so it is recommended people wear long sleeves, bring old sunglasses, hearing protection, suntan lotion and something to snack on.
Over the years, numerous active shooter drills have been conducted at different schools in Long Beach. LBCC has had one at each of the campuses.
Sgt. Rob Gallagher of the juvenile investigations section said, “We’ve been doing this since Columbine,” a school shooting April 20, 1999 at Columbine high school in Columbine Colo.
The goal of the drill is to better prepare the officers in the event they have to respond to the real thing.
Lt. Julie Prior of the campus police said, “Prior to the Columbine Shooting, officers had a different approach when dealing with an active shooting situation. Police tactics had to change and they did. The first responding officers are now trained to engage and neutralize the threats to prevent loss of life. ”