Police agencies, first responders conduct active shooter training at North Augusta school

September 30, 2018

Local, state and federal law enforcements agencies and first responders conducted an active shooter training exercise Thursday, Sept. 27, at a North Augusta middle school.

The Aiken County Public School District hosted the joint training exercise Thursday at Paul Knox Middle School, 1804 Wells Road in North Augusta.

More than 70 law enforcement personnel and emergency responders participated, including the Aiken Department of Public Safety, the Aiken County Sheriff’s Office, North Augusta Public Safety, Aiken County EMS, South Carolina Emergency Management Division, Aiken County Emergency Management Division, South Carolina Law Enforcement Division and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

The active shooter scenario involved “two armed suspects and an improvised explosive device,” according to a release provided by the City of Aiken.

District administrators and employees served as role players in the exercise, which included emergency responders who treated those acting as “injured” before transporting them off site.

“The immediate feedback we received from local, state, and federal law enforcement observers was overwhelmingly positive,” said Dr. Tim Yarborough, director of operations for Aiken County Public Schools. “As intended, the drill pointed out those areas of strength and weakness that we will address in an ongoing cycle of preparation, drilling, and improvement.”

The exercise introduced new elements to the collaborative training, which were implemented following a similar exercise held last summer at Aiken Middle School. The current training scenario featured the presence of emergency first responders, with law enforcement personnel from different agencies working together in smaller units to neutralize the threat.

“We certainly want to extend our utmost in appreciation to our participating law enforcement and emergency response personnel for their dedication to the continued safety of our community and for the professionalism they exhibited during the training exercise,” Yarborough added. “We want to especially thank our employees for their time and Paul Knox Middle School Principal Dr. Jason Holt for his logistical support and for welcoming us to utilize his facility for the drill.”

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