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    “Texas Counterdrug Guardsmen support DPS TECC training for new recruits, agencies”

    “Texas Counterdrug Guardsmen support DPS TECC training for new recruits, agencies”

    Photo By Capt. Nadine Wiley De Moura | Texas National Guard Joint Counterdrug Task Force member, Staff Sgt. Quincy Tidwell...... read more read more

    AUSTIN, Texas – Since 2017, Texas National Guard Joint Counterdrug Task Force members have provided support for the Texas Department of Public Safety’s Tactical Emergency Casualty Care training by implementing their first-hand military experience for roughly 500 recruits and several multi-agency classes across the state.

    Once or twice a month Guardsmen assist in the department’s Reality Based Training Unit courses in Florence and throughout the state.

    “The Texas Guardsmen support is important because it adds additional instructors that can help us out, especially with large classes,” said Sgt. Jose Chavarria, the DPS Realty Based Training Unit instructor. “More instructors allow for a greater instructor to student ratio. The Guardsmen bring to the table different experiences and perspectives and they are able to share examples.”

    As the training unit fine tunes their curriculum for the emergency casualty care course, troopers like Sgt. Chavarria look to the military’s Tactical Combat Casualty Care because of the similar fundamentals.

    “The TECC class is very similar to our TCCC so we are able to bring that same training along with the experience we have from the field or deployments,” said Master Sgt. Rolando Garcia, Texas National Guard Joint Counterdrug Task Force member. “There is a lot of overlap while aiding in instructing these classes. There is so much repetition that you get to know it that much better.”

    Garcia and the other Soldiers who participated in supporting the classes were also exposed to other emergency care techniques which they plan to take back to their units.

    The team of Guardsmen who assisted the training were recognized with one of the highest DPS awards—the Director’s Award. According to the Texas DPS award tracking records, since 2003, only 198 Director’s Awards have been earned by non-troopers.

    Since Guardsmen began supporting the TECC classes troopers have been putting their training to use in the field.

    “In service year 2017 to now, there have been approximately 60 medical interventions-- meaning troopers are using the knowledge and applying tourniquets, direct pressure, wound packing and basic fundamentals,” Chavarria said. “I think that has a lot to do with what we’re doing as a joint effort. As a whole team we are pushing this training and knowledge on our troopers.”

    Agencies around the state have also begun implementing and seeking the TECC training.

    Following the Santa Fe, Texas shooting, DPS Trooper and Emergency Medical Technician Colin Kolpski, reached out to the Reality Based Training Unit in order to bring the TECC training to law enforcement agencies in the Galveston region.

    “After the Santa Fe incident I saw an opportunity to start this training, to bring it out to as many people as we can and bring it back to the county I work with,” Kolpski said. “We wanted to bring these life saving techniques and extra added tools to not only save themselves, but to also save the lives of others they come in contact with.”

    Texas Game Warden Jennifer Provaznik, one of the 30 officers who attended the multiagency training in Texas City said that the training is going to save lives one day.

    “The state trains us very well,” said Provaznik. “I think this training was more involved with the wounds in the legs and more interactive scenarios over a two-day period”.

    As a Game Warden, Provaznik’s job is different from other law enforcement officers in the state because almost everyone she comes in contact with is armed.

    “Everyone you deal with has a gun because they are either road hunting, deer hunting or doing some sort of hunting,” Provaznik said. “Everyone has a rifle so you have to be more prepared and on point because you never know what’s going to happen. That is why we train so vigorously.”

    During the training officers have a day of classroom instruction where they learn or refresh their knowledge on applying tourniquets, wound packing, applying bandages and pressure, and how to make an improvised litter to carry up to 400 pounds using a 25-foot tubular webbing.

    Instructors also discussed how to remove a victim from a vehicle and away from the danger zone while suppressing the threat.
    On the second day, the officers apply everything that they have learned in real life based scenarios.

    In one scenario, there is an officer who is down and the responding officer has to apply two tourniquets blind folded.

    In another scenario the responding officer has to address a leg and neck wound. In the third scenario the officer has to respond to a truck accident, pull the victims out of the car and administer medical care.

    In the last scenario, the officers had to suppress the threat, remove their victim from the scene and provide medical care.

    “I’ve been unfortunately at a lot of traumatic scenes and it’s very helpful to be able to think more quickly and be able to apply things more effectively,” Provaznik said. “The biggest thing I got out of this is how to pick up people larger then myself, at my 5-foot, 6-inch and 135-pound stature-- which I have to do a lot of in the field. I liked the blind-folded tourniquet station because I work a lot of night shifts and my flash light fails all the time.”

    Provaznik added that getting to hear the Guardsmen’s first-hand experience in addressing gun-shot wounds was especially useful for her in her line of work.

    “This multi-agency training made me feel more comfortable because I know whenever I am struggling, we all know what is supposed to happen, we’ve all been trained with the same tactics,” Provaznik said.

    Officers and Guardsmen alike agreed that the relationships that have been built through the multi-agency TECC training are invaluable.

    “I think it’s such a mutually beneficial relationship for all of the agencies involved,” said Master Sgt. Rolando Garcia. “It prepares our state’s troopers, prepares other departments, refreshes training for the Counterdrug Guardsmen involved and makes us stronger as a state.”

    In the future Chavarria said that DPS plans to continue refining the curriculum and eventually extend classes to civilian allies and members who deal in general public services.

    “The concept is that we will be able to provide guidelines for if you are in a situation that has some kind of threat, car on fire, active shooter or something that is life threatening, you will have some knowledge to stop and control the bleed and get to hospital,” Chavarria said.

    The Reality Base Training Unit plans to continue to coordinate and draw from the experience Guardsmen provide to enhance their program. The Iowa National Guard Counterdrug Task Force has also visited and played a role in providing expert medical training.

    “We are grateful that we have had the opportunity to work with the Texas Counterdrug program, and Iowa’s as well,” Chavarria said. “The counterdrug programs have helped us shape the program by providing perspective and assistance and so much knowledge—we couldn’t ask for anything more.”

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    NEWS INFO

    Date Taken: 01.31.2019
    Date Posted: 01.31.2019 16:39
    Story ID: 309016
    Location: TX, US

    Web Views: 189
    Downloads: 1
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