June 3, 2022

Jessica Pope
Communications and Media Relations Coordinator

VSU Plans Emergency Response Training Exercise June 7

VALDOSTA — The Valdosta State University Police Department will conduct an emergency response training exercise during the morning / early afternoon on Tuesday, June 7.

As part of the training exercise, volunteer actors will portray students, faculty, and staff both inside and running from Ashley Hall, while university police respond to the scene as they likely would in an actual event. The training exercise perimeter will be clearly marked with signage. Please note that the training exercise will involve the sound of simulated gunfire.

Passersby may also see training exercise-related activity around the Oak Street Parking Deck, Front Lawn, University Center, and driveway area between the Student Union and Hopper Hall.

This training exercise is a joint initiative with the Valdosta Police Department, Lowndes County Emergency Management Agency, Lowndes County Sheriff’s Office, Remerton Police Department, Valdosta Fire Department, South Georgia Medical Center, Moody Air Force Base, and other emergency response agencies.

The training exercise will play out over real emergency dispatch channels in order to test the capabilities of the Lowndes County 911 Center. The training exercise will also serve as a test of the campus emergency alert system, and VSU community members will receive real-time alerts by phone, email, text, and desktop messaging. These dispatches and messages will begin with a notification that this is a drill. The training will also provide senior nursing students with experiential learning in triaging and emergency preparedness.

Please note that the training exercise will involve the use of special effects materials, or moulage, to create lifelike injuries and wounds.

Students, faculty, and staff on campus during the training exercise are encouraged to use the opportunity to practice office or residence hall lockdown procedures.

VSU began planning this emergency response training exercise in January. This effort is part of the university's around-the-clock commitment to provide a safe campus experience for students, faculty, staff, and guests.

Questions should be directed to Tim Balch, investigations and training sergeant with the VSU Police Department, at trbalch@valdosta.edu or (229) 333-7816.