Successful CareerTech Safety Conference Held at WTC
Elk City Police Department and Beckham County Sherriff deputies form a SWAT team during the active shooter simulation at the safety conference held at Western Technology Center.
Sixty-five CareerTech safety instructors from all over the state gathered in Elk City Oct. 7-9 to attend the Fall CareerTech Safety Conference. Western Technology Center's Elk City campus was the host for this year's event.
The conference is held twice a year and gives safety instructors an opportunity to network with each other, vendors, companies, and first responders.
The conference began with simulations and demonstrations involving the Elk City Police and Fire Departments, Beckham County Sheriff's Office, Air Evac, and staff from Western Technology Center.
The first event was an active school shooting simulation.
Local school administrators joined law enforcement and CareerTech staff to view the event. Elk City Police Chief Eddie Holland said the purpose of this simulation was to show how law enforcement and other first responders would handle a situation should it arise.
Chief Holland stated "it is our hope that we train so much that there will never be a need for it in an actual situation." He stated that WTC has been a great partner for training and provided a perfect environment to conduct these exercises.
Sirens from the officer's vehicles arriving on scene could be heard throughout the duration of the simulation, adding to the realism of the training. The simulation concluded with an AirEvac helicopter arriving from their base in Elk City to simulate transport of an injured officer.
Attendees were then taken to the five story training tower located behind the main building of WTC Elk City.
The Elk City Fire Department demonstrated several training scenarios to include a dumpster fire, car fire, and a house fire in which the tower was used. After the event, CUDD Pressure Control of Elk City provided a meal for the attendees and participants in the demonstrations.
The conference continued on Thursday with WTC Superintendent Hoyt Lewis welcoming the attendees. Lewis stated that he was pleased they would take time to travel to western Oklahoma and be part of this beneficial event. An honor guard from the Elk City Police and Fire Departments presented the colors and officially began the conference.
Several sessions were offered to the attendees by the Oklahoma Department of Career Tech to include a demonstration of their new online curriculum for use in safety classes. This curriculum, ctYOU, gives safety instructors a flexible option for training required by companies and municipalities whose scheduling may be a challenge.
Randy Gallaway of Gallaway Safety Solutions, LLC and co-owner of A Plus Senior Services, Inc., was the keynote speaker for the day. A victim of workplace injury, Gallaway has a special concern and passion for job place safety. He spoke of his mission to "change attitudes and improve safety" for all companies. The conference attendees were then treated to dinner at the Elks Lodge in Elk City.
The conference concluded on Friday with guest speakers to include Bill Helton, mayor of Elk City, and Rep. Harold Wright, District 57. Wright spoke of his concern for education in Oklahoma, including CareerTech. He shared personal stories of his wife, mother, and father being educators and how that shapes his work in the legislature regarding education.
Wright spoke of the state budget situation and conducted a candid question and answer session with those in attendance. Speakers from the Oklahoma Corporation Commission, Oklahoma Department of Labor, OSHA, and Oklahoma Department of Career Tech gave important information to the attendees to be utilized in their training efforts.
The attendees praised the city of Elk City and Western Technology Center for their hospitality and expressed their desire to return the conference to western Oklahoma in the future.
Greg Derieg Marketing Communications Specialist
580-562-3181 ext. 218