NEW ORLEANS – Local first responders are getting special training this week using new technology; life-like robots.
The emergency medical responders reenacted an active shooter scene using the robots at an EMS exposition, held at the Morial Convention Center.
The adult simulator, called “Hal,” weighs about 70 pounds, costs 48 thousand dollars and is so realistic that it talks, blinks, has seizures and bleeds.
“It allows them to train and train and train,” said James Archeto, VP of corp planning for Gaumard Scientific, the company that makes the robots. “So when they come into a scenario, whether it be a car accident or a child who's ill, or God forbid an active shooter scenario, they're prepared.”
Approximately 10,000 responders from 48 countries are attending what New Orleans’ EMS Deputy Chief said is the largest EMPS expo in the country. Many will get an opportunity to practice the active shooter drill, where it becomes a priority for EMS and law enforcement to work together.
“We learned through past school shootings and mass shootings that people have died inside buildings while they waited for EMS,” said Ken Bouvier, New Orleans’ EMS deputy chief.
The robots appear to be the center of attention at this year's conference. According to Bouvier, it’s meeting a need as EMS increasingly find themselves training for active shooting scenarios.