Our view: Active shooter drills a necessity in an unfortunate reality

Published 12:00 pm Thursday, December 22, 2022

In rural towns like Luverne, we would like to think active shooter incidents we see with increased frequency nationwide could never happen here, but those who have the authority along with the responsibility to mitigate such devastating and tragic events should formulate a plan on how to deal with them should they occur in our hometowns.

Recently, local healthcare services in Luverne partnered with several local law enforcement agencies to conduct a full-scale active shooter drill Dec. 1, and we’re confident the experience left an impact on each of the participants as they saw and experienced what such an event could look like.

The collaboration between Beacon Behavioral Hospital employees, Crenshaw Community Hospital staff, Brantley and Luverne rescue squads, Crenshaw County Sheriff’s Department, Crenshaw County Emergency Management Department, and the Luverne Police Department required those leading the scenario to provide the best possible simulation of a worst-case scenario.

Benefits of conducting these training sessions include ensuring our medical facilities can meet the needs of the community in the scenario, and allowing our first responders to be on the same page with strategies to apprehend the active shooter and treat victims.

We encourage all in our communities to have a plan in place, whether the options available are run, hide, or fight.

Another aspect we think may benefit the local community is to have a designated spokesperson for relaying information to local media so we can ensure we get the story right and emphasize to the public to stay clear of the scene until the threat has been contained.

We hope those who participated in the drill never have to use the valuable information they learned through participating in these simulations, but if they do, may those skills protect them and allow them to save others.