Area schools, police describe latest school safety measures - WVVA TV Bluefield Beckley WV News, Weather and Sports

Area schools, police describe latest school safety measures


BLUEFIELD, Va (WVVA)-- Friday's shooting marks the eve of the anniversary of the Newtown school shooting. Since then, schools have been implementing active shooter plans to better react to today's events.


Police as well as school officials in Bluefield say they are constantly working to improve safety plans.

We spoke with principals at several Tazewell County schools who say they have communicated with officers about their lockdown plans and where students will be located if a tragedy occurs.

In turn, Lieutenant Shane Gunter with the Bluefield Police Department says a tactical response team practices monthly, working through mock scenarios to stay up-to-date in case they are needed to handle an emergency. They know entrances and exits to schools in their jurisdiction and stay aware of the school's existing safety policies.

He added if the need should arise, police are prepared to enter the building and do whatever they can to take down a threat.

But Lt. Gunter tells us that you can help them prevent a disaster before it even gets to that point. 

"I want everyone to know that no detail is too small that we're not going to come check it out. A lot of times we can prevent something much worse from happening," he said.

We spoke with parents who are glad police are working so closely with schools and say their children's safety is of the utmost importance. Christy Bunker tells us what happened at Sandy Hook Elementary changed her outlook on life in a small town.

"We do have a false sense of security when we live in a small town that something like that won't happen here," she said. "But I think we've learned with time that we are just as much at risk as some of the bigger cities."

Many schools also have their doors locked throughout the day with an intercom system used to screen who enters the building.

Educators as well as police assure us they are prepared to do whatever they can to keep area children safe.
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