As part of ongoing plans to deal with emergencies, the College has been involved in a series of ongoing inter-agency exercises headed by the Office of New York City Emergency Management (NYCEM, formerly known as OEM).
The purpose of these exercises is to mitigate loss of life by increasing inter-agency cooperation and improving response capabilities among the main responding agencies. The active participants have been NYPD, FDNY, FDNY EMS, CSI, and CUNY Central Public Safety. The first exercise was held in the Campus Center (Building 1C) Green Dolphin Lounge on Jan. 24, 2018, and was attended by approximately 80 commanders and responders from the previously mentioned agencies. This was mostly a discussion/table-top exercise geared toward leading up to the second and third more hands-on/functional exercises.
Stage two, known as a Command Post Exercise, will be held on campus on Sunday morning Apr. 8, 2018, between the hours of 6:00am and 11:00am. This drill will have commanders from the participating agencies actually responding to the campus. Command Posts will be established and the participants will be tasked with reacting to a rapidly evolving situation, which may include a vehicle ramming, active shooter, IEDs, etc., on campus. The actual responding agency Commanders along with a number of Mobile Command Post vehicles will be the only boots-on-the-ground responders to the campus for this drill.
The third part of this series of exercises (date yet to be determined) will include large-scale response from the participating agencies. It would also include agency personnel acting as the perpetrators using simulated weaponry. The responders would also use simulated weapons in their efforts to neutralize the perpetrators and end the threat.
The College takes nothing more seriously than the safety of our students, faculty, staff, and visitors. While it is still unlikely that you will ever find yourself in a situation as described above, it is out of an abundance of caution that the College supports these exercises. To this end, we are offering Active Shooter Training for any civilian members of our population who wish to avail themselves of this service. Additionally, you will soon see an increased number of fire evacuation drills on campus and we are also looking into methods of making improvements to our ability to “lock in” and to possibly use windows as a means of escape as well.