Cutting Edge Training

America’s Combatives and Liability Trainer Aut viam inveniam aut faciam

("I will either find a way or make one.")

Integrated Active Shooter Response


“Law enforcement has wasted a decade arguing about tactics in response to the Active Shooter.  It’s time we moved forward to training that actually will save lives.”  Sgt. Craig Allen, Hillsboro, OR, Police Department.

Police and fire personnel jointly responding to an Active Shooter eventCutting Edge Training provides a truly revolutionary life-saving training program of consulting and mentorship:  Integrated Public Safety Response to the Active Shooter.  Integrating the response of police and fire services is the next level of addressing these tragedies and mitigating the results of the carnage.  For law enforcement command, trainers, and first-responder officers themselves, a doctrine change of abandoning unproven, complicated formation training in favor of proven movement to contact and arrest methods are promoted, then smoothly transitioning to facilitate the emergency medical treatment of the wounded by Fire.   For fire personnel, and especially for their Command Staffs, there is a doctrine change in the manner of their employment, injecting these life-saving personnel into the scene more quickly to provide emergency care for the injured. 

Currently, law enforcement and fire services operate independently within their own bubbles of expertise as if they never intersect during a criminal mass casualty event like an Active Shooter.  The mission of saving lives remains the same: its manner needs to change.  This consulting and training program brings a comprehensive integrated approach to the response to the Active Shooter, intentionally exploiting natural overlap between police and fire personnel in their mutual response to these tragedies.  This cooperative effort increases the efficiency of each public safety partner in their vital roles of perserving the lives of the innocent. 

Historical Response to the Active Shooter

The training and philosophy of responding to the Active Shooter event until now has been myopic and formally compartmentalized:

Clean, neat, tidy roles.  However, the real world intrudes. 

Officers respond to “shots fired” and “man-with-a-gun” at a crowded location, and the initial officers responding (often) hear the final shot: the gunman has taken his own life.  Or a civilian has intervened and stopped the killing.  If the officers "cell up," this group of officers will ponderously make its way through the structure, clearing all side rooms as they have been trained--taking a lot of time to do their jobs as the wounded are bleeding.  Within thirty minutes, several hundred patrol cars from agencies from surrounding counties, including off-duty officers in their privately-owned vehicles respond, and there is a massive traffic jam that is often blocks deep surrounding the crime scene.  Fire personnel have been staged for some time, sometimes a mile away near the Incident Command Center, awaiting an “all clear” from law enforcement before responding to the scene, and time is ticking away.  Officers may be performing the initial clearing of the structure and are slowly working their way through as they carefully ensure there are no additional threats, or they may be awaiting the arrival of SWAT for the formal clearing of the building--again, taking precious, life-saving time the wounded do not have.  Meanwhile, individual officers are taking personal initiative and attempting to save the wounded, dragging and carrying them, sometimes for blocks to awaiting ambulances as firefighter/paramedics are chafing to get inside the crime scene to assist those who can be saved, but are held back by security needs.  Carrying and dragging the critically wounded for blocks exacerbates their medical distress, and time is moving by.  Officers also self-deploy with the wounded loaded into the back seat of a patrol car, driving Code 3 (lights and siren) to the closest hospital, quickly overwhelming that facility's ability to care for the number of patients being forced upon them, further delaying treatment.  The situation is chaotic...and the response fragmented.  As each minute flies by, those wounded who might be saved slip away. 

There is a Better Way:  Integrating Police and Fire Response

An integrated approach to the Active Shooter, as well as other criminal mass casualty events, has been developed and successfully exercised to solve many of the response conflicts observed when these two vital public safety disciplines respond to an Active Shooter event.  It involves each discipline communicating their operational requirements, and modifying traditional roles to create a truly life-saving response.  This integrated response involves the identification and continuation of individual roles where each discipline excels; law enforcement is trained to confront the shooter and to investigate the crime, and fire is trained to treat and transport the wounded.  How these roles intersect and how that mission intersection can be supportive of the other to facilitate the efficient, effective, and functional public safety response is the next evolution of Active Shooter response. 

Bottom line, while remaining in their own specialized “swim lanes,” police officer and firefighter/paramedic functions naturally overlap.  Within this overlapping of duties and roles, it is encumbent upon police to facilitate Fire's access to patients, and Fire must change in its staging and response into the scene, esssentially entering a "warm zone" to facilitate early patient access.  Through this integrated approach, the ability to mitigate the loss of life increases exponentially.  It enables the police to interdict the suspect's killing spree while ensuring fire can treat and transport all "Immediate Critical" victims within 45 minutes of the initial 9-1-1 call.  This coordinated response assures the early interdiction of the shooter and the advanced medical treatment well-within the “Golden Hour” of trauma care.  This is how lives are saved. 

What Cutting Edge Training Provides for Your Jurisdiction's Active Shooter Response

Cutting Edge Training’s staff of expert trainers, with extensive operational and training experience in both the police and fire service, guide and mentor your respective public safety training staff through the training necessary to create an functionally integrated public safety response to the Active Shooter and criminal mass-casualty events.

There are phases to this training process, and each evolution must occur sequentially for the training and eventual real-world response to be successful.  Cutting Edge Training provides the documents and training materials, as well as the milestones on the training timeline necessary to create an effective integrated response to these horrific events.  If desired, TRAIN-THE-TRAINER courses are available to meet your staff's training delivery needs.  We also provide direct training to your officers and firefighters if desired.

Why Use This Cutting Edge Training Program?

Cutting Edge Training’s staff of trainers have created the only comprehensive integrated response program that can demonstrably meet the primary mission goal:  saving lives.  Yes, your police and fire training staffs can reinvent the wheel and spend the literally thousands of personnel-hours creating training that may recreate what our staff has already created, finding the problems that have already been solved, and doing the work that has already been so expertly accomplished.  Or those agency trainers can implement a program that has already been exercised and formatted to meet your unique requirements.  Contact us to discuss how we can bring this life-saving training to your jurisdiction and work with your trainers to protect your citizens from needless loss of life.

This is the only training that brings a real-world understanding and comprehensive response to the ultimate public safety goal of quickly ending the killing and wounding of the innocent and to transporting each victim within that life-saving Golden Hour for treatment.  Traditional response methods leaving Fire waiting until the scene is cold and depending upon officer's initiative in dragging people for hundreds of feet leaving blood trails on the sidewalks is not only inefficient but is irresponsible. In Active Shooter response training, it's time to grow beyond discussions of tactics and formations and begin the big picture discussion about saving lives.  Integrating the Police and Fire missions into a more seamless response is the future.  We look forward to assisting you and your jurisdiction to meet this life-saving goal today.