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Realistic Police Training Gives Officers Hands-On Experience

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(credit: CBS)

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By Caroline Lowe, WCCO-TV

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Dozens of officers from the metro area took part this week in a new form of emergency medical training that focuses on keeping them safe when they respond to dangerous situations.

The training, called TEMPO for Tactical Emergency Medical Peace Officer, comes on the heels of the deadliest in this country for officers losing their lives on duty. It was created in 2008 and the first of its kind in this region.

The tactical training is coordinated by Hennepin County Medical Center’s Dr. Jeffrey Ho, who is also a licensed peace officer in Minnesota.

“We do actual scenarios in the field where officers have a good job or made mistakes. We teach to that level so they can learn from that,” said Dr. Ho at the South Metro Training Center in Edina.

On Thursday, in subzero weather, scenarios included a routine check on a loud noise call and ended with an officer getting shot in the leg and other officers responding to help stop his bleeding while ducking bullets. Besides learning how to provide emergency medical care to injured officers in dangerous situations, the officers are trained to provide care to other people who have been hurt, including suspects.

“Very realistic, got the adrenalin going,” said Edina officer Ryan Schulz who took part in one of the scenarios.

Another scenario had the officers checking on a suicidal man. When they got to his house, he was dead and was lying next to a dead baby and a gun. The house was filled with carbon monoxide from a car hooked up with a hose. If it were real, 70 percent of the officers who responded to that call would have died since they went into the house and would have been overcome with the gas.

The training also included officers soaking their hands in ice water before they went out on calls so they could practice using their equipment when their fingers were frozen.

Officers praised the training, calling it the most realistic they have had and said they were grateful for chance to make their mistakes there, rather than in a real life situation.

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