By Brittany Anderson
KYLE – It’s a scary and uncomfortable reality to accept, but knowing what to do when faced with an active fire event could very easily help save your life or someone else’s.
The Kyle Police Department is one of many agencies using the Civilian Response to Active Shooter Events (CRASE) program, designed and built on the Avoid, Refuse, Defend strategy developed by ALERRT (Advance Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training) in 2004.
CRASE is completely free and strives to provide strategies, tips, and a proven plan for surviving an active shooter event. The course examines the history and prevalence of active shooter events and covers various civilian response options, medical issues, and considerations for conducting exercises.
KPD Captain Pedro Hernandez said there are five CRASE instructors within the KPD, all of whom have completed the ALERRT training course to teach the program. Businesses, hospitals, places of worship, community organizations and schools can all benefit from the training.
CRASE is structured as a four-hour program but can be adapted according to the needs of the participants, and instructors will usually go wherever you are to conduct the training. Hernandez said there were no hands-on or practical exercises, but instead used PowerPoint presentations and training videos.
Because these types of events start so quickly, law enforcement may not be able to be on the scene for a few minutes – vital time. The ADD strategy involves avoiding the aggressor and being aware of your surroundings, denying them access to you and victims by keeping a distance and creating barriers, and defending yourself so you can survive when you cannot avoid or deny.
Hernandez noted that with training coming, a medical component has been added to the course. Self-Aid Buddy Aid teaches people how to apply tourniquets, dress a wound, apply bandages and more. Hernandez explained that in an active shooting event, law enforcement’s first priority is to stop the killing. As such, they might not be able to heal wounded immediately, which makes these types of skills beneficial.
Although the program has no age limit, Hernandez said it is ultimately up to parents to judge what they feel is appropriate for their child. The PowerPoint slides aren’t overly graphic, but some of the audio or video used can be disturbing – for example, a 911 call from the 1999 Columbine High School shooting is used.
But these days, these skills and knowledge are important to have on hand, just in case, no matter how old you are.
“Young children and teenagers should be introduced to this type of survival training,” Hernandez said, adding that the strategies taught can be applied to anyone, anywhere, not just at events. of active school shooting.
If you are based in Kyle and would like to schedule a time to complete the CRASE program, contact Captain Hernandez at [email protected] If you are based in Buda, contact Community Affairs Manager Freddy Erdman at [email protected] For more useful information, visit the ALERRT website at www.alerrt.org.