IPFW drill teaches students about emergency response

IPFW has already started the fine tuning process. Staff members said the drill was an opportunity to see where they can improve procedures to make sure they're ready.

Posted: Oct 22, 2017 9:16 AM
Updated: Oct 22, 2017 9:16 AM

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WFFT)- IPFW's emergency drill Thursday morning had students' adrenaline pumping. 

"You just never really know how you're going to act in that situation, with the adrenaline flowing, the chaos going on around you, and it just helps a lot to practice and have a plan," said Jordan Heckler, an IPFW student. 

The drill featured a posed shooter, and several students and faculty acting as hostages, and pretending to be injured. 

"It's a little nerve racking seeing how people reacted, and how I would react," said Taylor Hartman, another student. 

"They tried to make it as realistic as they could. It was a very interesting insight that I hope I never have to go through in real life," said Walter Soptelean, an IPFW faculty member. 

The call went out at 9:52 a.m. Everyone on campus knew about the situation within 10 minutes, a time students said they feel good about. 

"I think we have really good policies set up, and this is just going to help us fine tune them and make them even better," said Jacklyn Messerschmidt. 

IPFW has already started the fine tuning process. Staff members said the drill was an opportunity to see where they can improve procedures to make sure they're ready. 

"When you look at the headlines and things that are occurring around our country, particularly in schools and on campuses, it's really important for a campus to be prepared to respond in an emergency such as this," said Kimberly Wagner, the Director of Public Relations at IPFW. 

Crews that responded also worked fast, arriving on scene in under two minute, but they said they want to promote existing programs, and make sure students and officers are ready for anything. 

"One of the biggest pieces we really need to continue to promote is our run, hide, fight program on how to handle and deal with an active threat that may occur within a campus facility, within a classroom, but also for everyone to walk away with a piece of information of run, hide, fight, because that situation really can happen everywhere," said Eric Chin, a Purdue University police officer. 

IPFW doesn't know exactly what changes will be made, but they said they'll know more in a couple weeks, after emergency crews have talked more about the drill. 

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