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Emergency response kits coming to Lancaster County schools with resource officers

LANCASTER, Pa. --- In an effort described as a "starting point," middle and high schools with a school resource officer present will receive an emergency response kit.

The kits include five tourniquets, four chest seals, five bandages, and a quick clot gauze.

“If it ends up saving one life it’s worth it and honestly, if they’re never used, that’s the greatest thing ever because nothing bad happened,” said Lancaster County District Attorney Craig Stedman.

Stedman said they failed in an attempted to get grand funding for the kits.

Without giving up the effort, Stedman said they found $7,200 from smaller escrow accounts to buy 36 kits.

“It’s just protection for kids and really...if government is going to get involved in anything, shouldn’t we be involved in that?" said Stedman.

SGT. Michael Gerace with Lancaster Bureau of Police has led the training for school resource officers with the kits.

He said the equipment in the kits specialize in controlling serious bleeding from a wound.

He describes them as "enhanced first aid kits" and they will make it easier to perform life-saving techniques.

“If these things weren’t available, someone would have to improvise something, whether it’s a shirt to tie on top of an injury. A belt, a shoelace but these are things that are specifically made for those traumatic injuries," SGT. Gerace said.

While active shooter situations factor into the plan to get the kits, Gerace said the purpose has a much wider scope, ranging from a number of potentially serious incidents.

“We like to put the officers in a mindset this could be a basketball game and there’s a bleacher collapse. There could be a bus accident at the school," said Gerace.

He also said it will be up to each school district and resource officer where the kits will be kept in the school.

His recommendation was a central location, such as the end of a wing, where it's accessible to anyone in the event of an emergency.

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