The New York State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services today announced that eight law enforcement teams from across the state recently completed scenario-based training at the second annual ‘Tactical Week’ exercise held at the State Preparedness Training Center in Oriskany. The training taught law enforcement tactical teams how to respond to some of the most challenging and dangerous calls for service in New York State, including active shooter events, serving high-risk warrants and hostage situations. Tactical Week began on May 15 and concluded on May 17.
During the event, tactical teams responded to a series of complex and evolving incidents to test their capabilities. The Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services, which developed and managed ‘Tactical Week,’ modeled scenarios after real-world incidents, including recent terrorist events in New York City (2017), London (2017), and Barcelona (2017).
“Tactical Week brings tactical teams together for cutting edge training based on the current threat environment,” said Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services Commissioner Roger L. Parrino Sr. “This advanced training remains a critical part of our broader efforts to train and support law enforcement statewide.”
The Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services has a long history of supporting New York’s law enforcement specialty teams through various grant programs. In addition to providing support to the state’s FBI-certified bomb squads and explosive detection canine teams, the Division has allocated $8.9 million to support 48 tactical teams in the state during the past five years.
This year each team, consisting of six members plus a team leader, had to respond to different skills lanes and scenarios throughout the week. The scenarios included:
- A vehicle ramming scenario, inspired by recent events in New York City, London and Barcelona, followed by a pursuit of the suspect involved. This cutting-edge scenario is based on the most recent reporting from the intelligence community.
- A large-scale manhunt for a suspect in a wooded area that incorporated the use of Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) technology. The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation UAS Program supported this event by educating tactical participants on UAS guidelines, requirements and capabilities. Teams observed UAS in action and used the camera feeds to inform their response efforts during a scenario involving the search for a suspect on the run. This integration of UAS supports the training center’s broader effort to become a hub of public safety UAS training in New York State.
- A hostage rescue situation where tactical teams rescued one of their officers held captive. This scenario highlighted recent incidents nationally in which law enforcement officers have been targeted by suspects, such as the ambush of police officers in Dallas in 2016.
- To further enhance the event, DHSES included a competitive element to this training. Teams were judged on their time and performance throughout the event, and DHSES designated a winning team at the conclusion of Tactical Week.
For the second year in row, many teams from across the state were interested participating in Tactical Week. After a review process, DHSES selected the following eight teams to participate in 2018:
- Binghamton Metro Area Regional Team
- Cheektowaga Police Department
- Colonie Police Department
- Glove Cities Regional Team
- Rome Police Department
- Troy Police Department
- Wayne County Sheriff’s Office
- Westchester County Police Department
“The real-world training offered by the State Preparedness Training Center is an asset to all police agencies across New York State,” said Chief Michael W. Lefancheck, Baldwinsville Police Department and president of the New York State Association of Chiefs of Police. “This outstanding training will equip our police officers with the knowledge and experience to successfully meet the serious demands and ever-changing tactical challenges in the 21st century. Special thanks to the staff at the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services for their dedication and commitment to the training and safety of police officers throughout the state.”
"We know that scenario-based training is the best way for tactical teams to train,” said Peter Kehoe, executive director of the New York State Sheriffs’ Association. “The New York State Preparedness Training Center developed this year's tactical training scenarios around actual recent terrorist events, so that our officers can be more prepared for the inevitable next terrorist attempt. Our citizens are safer because the New York State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services has created this real-life training program and a world-class training facility, which benefit Sheriffs' Offices and all other police agencies across the state. We applaud the Governor and the Division for their continuing commitment to this project.”
About the SPTC
The State Preparedness Training Center (SPTC), operated by the New York State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services, affords state, local, and federal agencies a complex of training venues to conduct the entire spectrum of training. From classroom lectures and discussions to reality- and high-performance scenario-based training, the SPTC offers opportunities for dynamic emergency first responder training. The SPTC offers agencies realistic training environments such as a simulated city, residential housing complex, collapsed building rubble pile, woodland structures and other settings. Now in its 12th year of operation, the SPTC annually trains thousands of New York’s first responders, including law enforcement, emergency medical services (EMS), and emergency management personnel, in a variety of areas including response to active shooter events, emergency vehicle operations, EMS special situations, and patrol officer survival.
The Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services (DHSES) provides leadership, coordination and support for efforts to prevent, protect against, prepare for, respond to, and recover from terrorism and other man-made and natural disasters, threats, fires and other emergencies. For more information, visit the DHSES Facebook page, follow @NYSDHSES on Twitter, or visit dhses.ny.gov.