Police patrol vehicles descended on Peter Skene Ogden secondary Wednesday morning to stage a lockdown drill.
RCMP members of the 100 Mile detachment, along with Cariboo Regional Traffic Services, Police Dog Service Team Grimmthe RCMP On Call Centre (Prince George) and BC Conservation, participated in the event at 10:20 a.m.
Staff-Sgt. Svend Nielsen said lock-down drills are essential in this day and age to protect students and staff from events occurring in our schools. Students who did not wish to participate were able to relocate prior to the start of the exercise. COVID protocols were followed, where applicable, by the attending officers.
Working with the PSO administration team, the RCMP members were able to complete three scenarios within the school to assist local officers in training for these unfortunate events. No weapons were used or displayed at any time and the Police Service Dog was not part of the training scenarios – only the handler was involved.
The scenarios involved a PSO staff member taking on the role of the “suspect” and creating an environment, which would benefit the officers involved while minimizing the impact to students. This included a person making noise to simulate a person in distress within the school, such as hitting a drum actively for a few minutes or yelling loudly at the responding officers. School administration was actively involved in these decisions prior to, and during the event, to ensure communication was active and knowledge was shared throughout.
There are future plans to continue educating students and staff moving forward in this manner. This is the third year where such a lock-down practice has involved officers with this kind of exercise. 100 Mile House RCMP has no such plans to bring this type of activity into local elementary schools.