LSU NCBRT/ACE Delivers Preparedness Presentations to US Virgin Islands School Safety Personnel
In February, subject matter experts from Louisiana State University’s National Center for Biomedical Research and Training/Academy of Counter-Terrorist Education (LSU NCBRT/ACE) delivered emergency preparedness presentations on a wide variety of manmade and natural threats for the school system of the United States Virgin Islands, or USVI, to the schools’ safety and security monitors.
LSU NCBRT/ACE is committed to providing high-quality and effective training to state, local, tribal and territorial responders. The presentations for USVI schools focused on a number of preparedness tactics, including topics like chemical and biological material leaks from nearby factories and gas stations, active shooter threats in or around schools, and natural disaster threats like hurricanes.
The USVI is an American territory consisting of three main islands. The school system consists of 23 schools with approximately ten thousand students. Safety and security monitors are the first on the scene of a threat or disaster in the schools, and they serve as the first line of response for manmade and natural disasters before emergency responders can arrive.
LSU NCBRT/ACE subject matter experts worked with USVI personnel to develop a presentation that included instructions on proper donning and doffing of Personal Protective Equipment for adults and students in the event of a chemical or biological threat, emergency response measures for environmental threats, island-specific evacuation routes for different types of threats, and more.
Irvin Mason, director of disaster planning and school safety for the USVI school system, said that LSU NCBRT/ACE’s presentations addressed the variety of threats that schools on the islands may face.
“I’ve worked with LSU for many years, so I’m familiar with their training and their qualified instructors,” Mason said. “The feedback I’ve received from the participants was great; everyone was really interested in the information, and LSU did a good job addressing all the concerns the monitors might have had.”
Almost all of the nearly 100 participants reported that the information in the presentations was clear and helpful and that the subject matter experts delivering the presentations – Barry Mounce and Chris Kotecki – were knowledgeable and professional. One participant noted that the presentations did an especially good job at “bringing the realities of these disasters to life.”
LSU NCBRT/ACE plans to continue its collaboration with USVI schools by hosting its Surviving an Active Threat: Run. Hide. Fight. (PER-375) course for school faculty and staff on both St. Thomas and St. Croix in June. Additionally, it will continue to work with USVI emergency management personnel and other stakeholders to assess the preparedness needs of other agencies and organizations in the area.
About LSU NCBRT/ACE
LSU NCBRT/ACE is a nationally recognized center for emergency preparedness and response training located at Louisiana State University’s flagship campus in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. We provide mobile training to both the national and international emergency response community. LSU NCBRT/ACE has expertise in research, development and delivery of training in the areas of specialized law enforcement operations; biological incident response; food and agriculture safety and security; school safety; and instructional design and technique. For more information on LSU NCBRT/ACE’s courses and resources, please visit https://ncbrt.lsu.edu/.