The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

Local News

March 7, 2013

Lockdown drill: School lockers checked during safety sweep

JOHNSTOWN — Five dogs from the Johnstown Police Department K-9 Corps – Chase, Athos, Array, Rocky and Cooper  – sprinted energetically throughout the halls of Greater Johnstown High School on Thursday morning.

Within about 10 minutes, the canines had sniffed all 1,000 lockers inside the building.

They were searching for drugs. None were found.

Their presence was part of a safety drill conducted by the police department and school district. Along with the random drug sweep, the school ran a lockdown in which students, teachers, faculty and other workers were confined to their rooms in order to simulate the precautionary steps they should take in case a potentially dangerous situation arises.

“We can do two things at once,” said school Resource Officer Chad Miller, a member of the Johnstown Police Department. “We put them on lockdown because the dogs are going through. We don’t want any kids in the hallways. We don’t want the dogs to be able to bite on a kid or a faculty member or anything like that.”

The high school usually conducts two drills per year.

Such simulations help K-9 Corps members – Officer Brad Christ, Sgt. Michael Plunkard, Officer B.J. Newman and Officer Mike Kanuch – familiarize themselves with the building in case they are needed in an emergency.

“It’s a benefit for the school district because it gives the officers a chance to come into the school to see the layout of the school,” said Kanuch, who oversees the unit.

Assistant Principal Michael Dadey, the district’s safety coordinator, added, “This drill is conducted based on the fact that we need to keep our school safe, keep the kids safe and secure. That’s our first priority here.”

The searches are not only a cooperative effort between the district and police department, but the Cambria County District Attorney’s Office also contributes funding to the Johns-town Police Department in order for it to provide local schools with K-9 services.

“The superintendent, the administration, the school board, the chief of police – they’re all forward thinkers,” said Miller. “They’re all looking at the safety of our kids and our community.”

Click here to subscribe to The Tribune-Democrat print edition.

Click here to subscribe to The Tribune-Democrat e-edition.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
  • smothers ‘It breaks my heart’: Shooting victim’s death leaves trail of shattered lives

    Victoria Smothers knows what people thought when they heard that a young black male had been shot to death in Moxham last week.

    April 16, 2014 2 Photos

  • School violence studied

    On a typical day last year, Pennsylvania schools caught 11 students toting weapons similar to ones used to slash 21 students and a security guard at a Pittsburgh-area high school, according to the state Department of Education. An untold number of others likely brought weapons to school but weren’t caught, safety experts say.

    April 16, 2014

  • Home is Where The Tribune-Democrat is Delivered!

    April 16, 2014

  • egg hunt17 ACRP quietly notes 25th anniversary

    There will be little or no fanfare accompanying Alternative Community Resource Program’s 25th anniversary.
    And that’s how the executive director, Frank Janakovic, wants it.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • windber17 Windber students earn top ‘Overchiever’ rank

    Windber Area school’s PSSA scores have been tops in the region for the past several years.
    This year, they’re among the head of the class statewide, Pittsburgh Business Times annual Schools Guide shows.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Wise, Charles Police charge bank robbery suspect

    A Johnstown man was jailed on $250,000 bond after police said he robbed the West End Branch of AmeriServ Financial. Charles Wise, 48, of Barron Avenue, was charged with two counts of robbery.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Inmate awaits sentencing for assault on guard

    A former inmate faces up to 15 years in prison when he is sentenced for assaulting a corrections officer at State Correctional Institution-Somerset, authorities said.

    April 16, 2014

  • windber pool Pool stays afloat despite troubles

    When a valve broke at the Windber Recreation Park pool last month, its municipal authority caretakers feared that meant the end for the pool’s aged, much-patched liner.
    But the old liner has held up – a stroke of luck that will save Windber Municipal Authority from having to seek a line of credit to cover repairs or risk delaying the pool opening, the authority’s recreation director, C.W. Beckley, said.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Creativity blossoming for spring art show

    The 16th annual Art in Bloom spring art show will brighten the Cambria County Courthouse in Ebensburg from noon to 6 p.m. April 26 and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. April 27.

    April 16, 2014

  • Alcatraz Challenge offers escape from routine

    Greater Johnstown Community YMCA is gearing up for its indoor biathlon, the Alcatraz Challenge.

    April 16, 2014

Poll

Do you think that Jack Williams will get the 270 signatures from city residents needed in order to have a referendum placed on a municipal ballot to have the city's pressure test mandate repealed?

Yes
No
I'm not sure
     View Results
House Ads