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Moody AFB wraps up active shooter training, emphasizes importance

Moody AFB and assisting agencies train for active shooter scenario. (U.S. Air Force photo by...
Moody AFB and assisting agencies train for active shooter scenario. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Briana Beavers)(U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Briana Beavers)
Published: Oct. 25, 2021 at 10:07 PM EDT
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VALDOSTA, Ga. (WALB) - Moody Air Force Base put its skills to the test during a week-long active shooter training exercise.

The trainings are crucial and base officials are required to do the exercises at least once a year.

It’s a community effort between the base and outside agencies. Everyone comes together to train for a threat scenario.

Moody AFB and assisting agencies train for active shooter scenario. (U.S. Air Force photo by...
Moody AFB and assisting agencies train for active shooter scenario. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Briana Beavers)(U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Briana Beavers)

With a history of gun attacks in civilian and military facilities around the country, active shooter training exercises are not easy to do but must be done because being prepared is crucial.

Inspector General of the 23rd Wing Maj. Christopher Bridges said they picked a less busy place on base for the exercise.

The scenario portrayed what would happen while several airmen were deployed. They wanted to see how it would look with first responder agencies in the community coming to aid in the scenario.

Moody AFB and assisting agencies train for active shooter scenario. (U.S. Air Force photo by...
Moody AFB and assisting agencies train for active shooter scenario. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Briana Beavers)(U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Briana Beavers)

“We don’t give the exact day or things like that so our first responders are a little surprised by it and they can play a good fight. They don’t know when it’s going to happen, how it’s going to happen, where it’s going to happen. They just know the week of and when it happens, they will respond accordingly like if it was in the actual situation,” said Maj. Bridges.

The element of surprise isn’t just for off-base agencies but for those on the inside as well.

Everyone had to practice locking down, staying away from windows, following protocols and locking the gates so no one could get in or out.

The exercise lasted about 45 minutes.

“It’s important because just like you said, it’s happened before, Fort Hood, Navy shipyard, even Virginia Tech the school. To practice responses, something like this, so if we’re ready to respond in a timely manner we can prevent more causalities and damage from happening. The quicker we are, the better we are in that response and save lives potentially,” said Bridges.

Bridges said they were able to train with a Life Flight helicopter, which will help if they can’t get somewhere by ambulance.

“Putting it in practice and actual exercise, get them on base and see what that would look like will really save response time later. Just things like if the base is locked down and gates are locked, it’s hard for cops to get on base, so how do we work around those issues to make sure priority gets through the gate. So it helps the response time for them to help us out, neutralize the shooter and be on scene quicker,” said Bridges.

A team effort between Lowndes County law enforcement, paramedics and other first responders made the practice very realistic so they can prepare for the worst to protect everyone as best as possible.

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