Education

West Orange Mock Shooter Drill Ready to Roll on August 20

09e6186748d6de2a3ac5_best_510bf26bc8261368d24d_lms01.jpg
Credits: woboe.org
09e6186748d6de2a3ac5_best_510bf26bc8261368d24d_lms01.jpg

WEST ORANGE, NJ - On Tuesday, Aug. 20, from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m., Liberty Middle School will be the scene of the largest mock shooter drill ever mounted in the state of New Jersey.

The list of participants in the drill, spearheaded by West Orange Police Sergeant John Morella, is staggering. The West Orange Police Department, police departments from Essex, Passaic, Morris and Hudson counties, the Essex County Sheriff's Office, the Essex County Office of Emergency Management, the New Jersey State Police; the Defense at Picatinny Arsenal and the U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center, along with the U.S. Federal Air Marshals; the Department of Homeland Security, St. Barnabas Medical Center, Monoc and University Hospital; and more than 100 parents, students and school district employees will participate to make the drill as realistic and educational as possible. Picatinny Arsenal, Rutgers, Montclair State University and Seton Hall University will all be filming the event.

West Orange Mayor Robert Parisi said, "The protection of our young people is our highest priority. Unfortunately, as we've seen in recent years, no school is immune to the possibility of an attack. This is an especially important drill because it increases our effort to provide safe and secure buildings for our students."

Sign Up for E-News

The ultimate goal is for not only the township of West Orange and its school district to learn how to handle such an unfathomable crisis, but for the drill to be used as a tool for law enforcement agencies, medical personnel, and other towns throughout New Jersey and the country. Morella reached out to outside agencies and DHS is funding the $140,000 project, which comes at no cost to taxpayers.

Mounting an exercise like this has been no easy task, but Morella remains excited about the possibilities of executing the daunting operation. "This is a very proactive approach with Law Enforcement and the U.S. military joining forces; to maybe not avert these types of incidents, but to be able to deal with them more effectively and efficiently in the hope of having fewer casualties in events such as this, and of having an understanding of how to react and deal with this type of incident as it unfolds,” he said.

The West Orange School district has recently updated several of its security measures and Interim Superintendent Jim O'Neill said, "We are proud to offer Liberty Middle School to law enforcement to hold this active shooter drill. The building is new and provides opportunities for a variety of scenarios. The grounds are expansive and can accommodate the many hundreds of participants and audience members expected. It is also an opportunity for the West Orange Board of Education to test our emergency management and communications plan for its level of effectiveness, and make adjustments if necessary.”

Chief of Police James Abbott noted, "In law enforcement, we are constantly training and preparing to respond to all different types of scenarios. This coordinated drill helps officers from multiple jurisdictions learn how to work together by establishing a standardized response that involves all parties responsible for the care and safety of our children. We will do everything with the resources we have to achieve our goal." 

The Alternative Press of West Orange will be on hand to cover the exercise beginning at 8:30 a.m., along with other local, and perhaps national, news sources.

 

 

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

West Orange

Local Children Invited to Register for Essex County Summer Camps

February 19, 2018

WEST ORANGE, NJ – Children of all ages are invited to participate in spring and summer camp opportunities at the Essex County Turtle Back Zoo, Essex County Codey Arena and the Essex County Environmental Center.

The zoo has several weeklong camp adventures that will introduce children to the extraordinary world of animals, nature and science. Campers and their parents/guardians are ...

Game of Thrones: A Definitive Ranking of Seasons 1-7

Groundhog Day. The day a tiny mammal’s shadow tells us when winter will come to an end. Me? I prefer my weather forecast in the form of a white raven (the telltale changing of seasons in Westeros).

For a few days, rumors spread that Game of Thrones will not return for its final season until April 2019, and while it was clarified that the April return date was likely a false rumor, HBO ...

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_f1e8b21af9d26c31d2e7_unnamed__8_

Sun, February 25, 10:00 AM

West Orange High School (Tarnoff Cafeteria), West Orange

44th Annual Orange West Orange UNICO Sports ...

Arts & Entertainment Education

Carousel_image_f7d9574673b2c2041627_unnamed__4_

Sun, February 25, 12:00 PM

AMC Essex Green, West Orange

The 2018 West Orange Classic Film Festival

Arts & Entertainment

Celebrate Your Health this Nutrition Month

February 21, 2018

Dear Editor,

This year, we learned that the number of Americans at risk for heart attack and stroke just got a lot higher.  An estimated 103 million adults have high blood pressure, according to new statistics from the American Heart Association, and about 39.7 percent of Americans have high cholesterol.  With March being National Nutrition Month, it’s a great time to ...

Free Cardiac and Concussion Screenings for Young Athletes

February 22, 2018

WEST ORANGE, NJ — The Matthew J. Morahan III Health Assessment Center for Athletes (MJM) at RWJBarnabas Health will provide free cardiac and concussion baseline screenings to young athletes on Saturday, March 3, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. at South Mountain Recreation Complex, Codey Arena, 560 Northfield Avenue, West Orange, NJ.

When preliminary testing to identify serious cardiac ...

Shouts of Racial Slurs During "Black Panther" Bring Police to Sparta Theatre

February 21, 2018

SPARTA, NJ – Sparta police were called to the New Vision Sparta Theater on Sunday night because of a woman shouting slurs in a screening of Black Panther.

Former New Jersey Assembly candidate Michael Grace was in the theater when two people started yelling racial slurs including “look at these ‘n-word’” and “can you believe these ...

Let the Games Begin

I am truly awed by the Olympics.  Watching these superb young athletes on TV inspires me to renew my membership to the gym and pursue my lifelong dream of taking home the gold.  

 

The problem is that in my deluded head, I can see actually see myself standing atop the podium.  I am wrapped in a puffy designer ski coat with a huge piece of bling slung around my neck ...

'What Stays' exposes family secrets and lies

‘What Stays’ exposes family secrets, resentment and lies

By Liz Keill

SUMMIT, NJ – In an original play by Laura Ekstrand and Jason Szamreta, the Dreamcatcher Repertory Theatre has provided an enlightening, funny and heart-felt view of family foibles.

Ekstrand has said that the germ of the play came from conversations with the ensemble members of the troupe, based on ...