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Transit Center Airmen learn, practice active shooter roles
Airman 1st Class Jeffrey Locke stands watch to ensure his fellow defenders remain secure as they search Master Sgt. Donald Tipton, an active shooter role-player, for extra weapons during a training exercise at the Transit Center at Manas, Kyrgyzstan, Sept. 8, 2011. Locke and Tipton are members of the 376th Expeditionary Security Forces Squadron. Locke is a patrolman deployed here from Cheyenne Mountain, Colo. Tipton is a logistics superintendent deployed here from McConnell Air Force Base, Kan. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Tammie Moore)
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Transit Center Airmen practice active shooter scenarios

Posted 9/9/2011   Updated 9/10/2011 Email story   Print story


by Tech. Sgt. Tammie Moore
376th Air Expeditionary Wing Public Affairs

9/9/2011 - TRANSIT CENTER AT MANAS, Kyrgyzstan -- Active shooter -- is a term relatively unknown a few years ago; however, it is increasingly populating news headlines. An active shooter is an armed person who used deadly force and has access to additional victims.

Airmen from the 376th Expeditionary Security Forces Squadron are making a push to ensure everyone at the Transit Center at Manas understands how to react if they are present during an active shooter situation.

Security forces defenders provided mass briefings informing the Transit Center population of their roles and responsibilities, and practiced responding to three active shooter scenarios Sept. 8.

"The most important part is that everyone at the Transit Center understands if there is an active shooter they each have a responsibility to protect themselves," said Christopher Manning, 376th ESFS training manager. "You have to know when to lock your building down, when to take cover and you need to understand what security forces are going to do; so you know what to do to help that response. As long as everyone understands their role, it will hopefully be a quick response."

In the event of an active shooter, Manning said if someone has information about the shooter they should pass it on to security forces. However, people should stay clear of security forces personnel so they can secure the building and apprehend the shooter.

"Don't cling to security force-personnel," Manning said. "They're there to help you, but don't run up and hug them, because they have a job to do."

The active shooter training scenarios took place in a 376th ESFS building and in the passenger terminal. The defenders had to neutralize an active shooter, clear the facility and evacuate causalities.

"The communication was really good," he told the defenders after the final exercise. "You came in here on fire. Good job!"

After hearing the evaluation of their performance, Maj. Beverly Baker, the 376th ESFS commander, addressed her squadron.

"Don't ever forget just how important this training is," said Baker, deployed here from Peterson Air Force Base, Colo. "Heaven forbid if you guys ever have to do this for real, but you have to be ready for that. I appreciate your hard work, your dedication to this. Don't let these skills perish: you've got to keep practicing them."

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