U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Brandan Eck (left), and Tech. Sgt. Ashlin Thomas (right), 8th Security Forces Squadron members, search a simulated active shooter during an exercise at Kunsan Air Base, Republic of Korea, July 23, 2019. 8th SFS routinely trains to respond to a variety of threats. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Stefan Alvarez)
U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Brandan Eck (left), and Tech. Sgt. Ashlin Thomas (right), 8th Security Forces Squadron members, search a simulated active shooter during an exercise at Kunsan Air Base, Republic of Korea, July 23, 2019. 8th SFS routinely trains to respond to a variety of threats. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Stefan Alvarez)

8th FW tests responders’ mettle in active shooter exercise

by Senior Airman Stefan Alvarez
Kunsan Air Base

KUNSAN AIR BASE, Republic of Korea -- The 8th Fighter Wing conducted an active shooter exercise Tuesday, July 23, 2019, at Kunsan Air Base, Republic of Korea. 

The exercise was aimed at measuring the emergency response capabilities of different organizations on base.

“The roleplaying active shooter exercise is intended to evaluate base response actions to a violent workplace threat,” said Master Sgt. Christopher Degruyter, 8th Fighter Wing inspection team manager. “The Wolf Pack performed well in many regards and was able to utilize emerging communications to effectively overcome lockdown limitations and ensure effective command and control.”

The active shooter entered one of the offices on base and began to fire blank rounds, forcing the personnel in the office to react to the threat until security forces came to neutralize it. Security forces then escorted victims and injured personnel to safety.

“8th Security Forces Squadron members responded with precision to the initial call, neutralized the threat and secured the area,” Degruyter said. “We spent some time at the scene and witnessed their engagement there, and walked the cordon where defenders had to usher personnel to safety and direct traffic away until the all clear was given.”

The 8th FW inspector general team regularly plans and schedules various types of trainings to ensure that the Wolf Pack is ready to respond and protect the base and its personnel from any threats on or off base.

“The IG team is committed to supporting the Commander’s Inspection Program, validating and enhancing Kunsan’s readiness across it’s spectrum of operations,” said Degruyter. “We will continue to innovate by developing new and exciting scenarios in unique ways to bolster our mission.”

The exercise tested the mettle of the Wolf Pack’s first responders, forcing them to act quickly with a high level of precision to ensure all threats were neutralized and that all injured and at-risk Airmen were evacuated to safety. The expertise and quick-thinking of the various organizations involved in the exercise led to improvements in the process of responding to future emergencies and a more fluid overall team effort.

Subscribe to our Stripes Pacific newsletter and receive amazing travel stories, great event info, cultural information, interesting lifestyle articles and more directly in your inbox!

Follow us on social media!

Facebook: Stars and Stripes Pacific
Flipboard: Stars and Stripes Community Sites

Looking to travel while stationed abroad? Check out our other Pacific community sites!
Stripes Japan
Stripes Okinawa
Stripes Guam

Recommended Content