ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - A training program to prepare Bernalillo County employees forworkplace violence is set to expand, largely because of the deadlyshooting rampage at the Emcore building in southeast AlbuquerqueMonday.
“I’ve had a lot of interest from other departmentsthat are now requesting the training,” said Public WorksSurety Coordinator Shannon Massey, who is assigned to thedepartment’s emergency preparedness program.
Massey started training hundreds of public works employees latelast year at the suggestion of federal safety officials.
“Based on recommendations from Homeland Security, wedecided to do an active-shooter course,” Massey told KRQENews 13.
The training includes classroom-type lectures and groupexercises with county employees preparing how to respond if anarmed shooter starts firing a weapon in the workplace.
“If you’re in a position where you can get out, thatis your best chance of survival,” Massey said.
If workers are not able to escape a violent situation, the nextbest thing is to hide in the safest place possible, and find waysto keep the shooter away like moving furniture to block officedoors, and keeping the doors locked.
Workers should try to call 911 as soon as possible.
“Shannon taught us that when you hear the gunshot theperson may be running toward you,” said Kim McKibben,director of the county’s Solid Waste Division.
“As you’re running, you should be zigzagging,”McKibben said. “If somebody’s trying to shoot you, youcan zigzag so they don’t have an easy target.”
McKibben is one of more than 300 employees trained so far.
Massey has also trained employees in the county manager’soffice. She’s prepared to expand her training to other countydepartments soon.
“I have a meeting actually on Friday morning to have thatdiscussion,” Massey said.
Monday’s shooting at Emcore is sparking new interest inthe program, and reminding those who’ve already been trainedthat workplace violence can happen anywhere.
“There’s tension in workplaces everywhere,”McKibben said. “It’s very sad. It’s very sad thatyou have to think about that.”
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