ALICE training set in Hampton, registration open

Friday, January 10, 2020 | 12:01 AM


ALICE Training on how to best respond to an active shooter or an aggressive intruder will be held at the Hampton Township Community Center on Feb. 23 from 1 to 4 p.m.

Only 100 seats are available for the free event. Registration must be done to secure a spot by visiting the police department page at www.hampton-pa.org.

The event is hosted by the Hampton Township police in conjunction with the Hampton Township School District. Residents, businesses, organizations or those who work in Hampton are encouraged to sign up.

“ALICE Training teaches an average person how to respond to a threat when faced with one to increase the chances of surviving,” said Hampton Township Chief of Police Tom Vulakovich.

ALICE stands for Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter, Evacuate and provides preparation and a plan for individuals and organizations on how to more proactively handle a threatening individual or active shooting situation.

It takes a nonlinear approach when responding and circumstantial and operational concerns vary in every new situation, according to a presentation at last year’s training.

ALICE is applicable in a variety of public areas, according to Dr. Rebecca Cunningham, assistant superintendent at HTSD and a school district representative for the program.

“The training will take place in the Hampton Community Center, but we will be discussing how to use the techniques in public places such as restaurants, shops, places of worship, and businesses,” she said.

It can also address scenarios specific to kindergarten through high school, healthcare facilities, higher education and government, according to the HTPD website.

ALICE Training tactics have become the accepted response, versus the traditional “lockdown only” approach, according to the police website.

The first part of the training will be classroom instruction and the second part will include actively using the skills participants learned during that instruction.

The event was held for the first time last year and this year follows a similar format, Vulakovich said.

“Everybody that comes to this is going to get the skills they need in order to survive an active shooter or a violent intruder situation,” Vulakovich said prior to last year’s event.

This can include showing participants how to run, hide and fight; the difference between shelter-in-place and lockdown, how to properly lockdown and secure a room, and how to counter an active shooter’s aggression.

The school district does provide ALICE Training for staff and developmentally appropriate ALICE training for its students annually, said Cunningham.

“We are so grateful for the partnership that we have with our first responders, and the opportunity to co-present ALICE training with the Hampton Township Police Department. The purpose of this ALICE training is to help our community members know what to do in the event they are faced with a violent intruder or crisis situation in a public place,” Cunningham said.

Last year, the chief and a Hampton police officer fired a rifle from several distances in the community center to give participants an idea of what it sounds like.

Mike Peters, council president, took the training last year and noted, “it’s worth taking.”

“You will look at life differently when it’s done,” said Municipal Manager Christopher Lochner, who also attended last year’s event.