SHU conducts emergency response exercise

Seton Hall University, in accordance with emergency response agencies from the Village of South Orange and Essex County, conducted an Emergency Response Exercise, Tuesday, May 24 between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m..

According to the coordinator for the exercise, Thomas Giordano, assistant director of Emergency Management, the exercise turned out well.

“You have to understand, the purpose is to test,” Giordano said. “You’re going to see strengths and places you need to improve.”

While Giordano said the exercise turned out well, he did say that there were some issues.

“There’s always issues, everyone is in the heat of battle and people are focusing on their immediate needs,” Giordano said.

According to Giordano, through those issues they are able to tweak things for the future.

This exercise was an active shooter scenario in which they used the area around Boland and the roads leading up to it.

Giordano said the bulk of the response was municipal responders since the University does not have an on-campus police force.

Giordano said the University’s initial role in scenarios such as the one simulated in yesterday’s exercise is to put out alerts to the community.

“Our job is to alert and warn the community,” Giordano said. “We assist but we step back.”

The last exercise similar in scale to Tuesday’s ran by the University was in 2008, but according to Giordano it wasn’t quite as big.

While exercises this large aren’t held as often, according to Giordano, the University holds tabletop scenarios quite frequently.

According to Giordano, tabletops are exercises in which scenarios are talked through.

“You talk your way through the scenario,” Giordano said.

Giordano said the University is hoping to run an exercise similar to Tuesday’s in the future providing money is left over from the grant the University received this past December.

Ashley Duvall can be reached at: ashley.duvall@student.shu.edu

Author: Staff Writer

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