By Bill Gruelich, Public Information Officer, Presidents/Office
The big news for the college was the dedication of the new Victor Valley Regional Public Safety Training Center. The 41,500 square foot building is now on line and serving students and the community. The multi-purpose facility functions as a training center for four distinct programs, including Fire Technology, Administration of Justice, Emergency Medical Services and Corrections. The future looks good for community partnerships that will potentially benefit the services in which these students will eventually transfer. The $31.5 million structure and prop yard also includes a CERT City that will be used to train community volunteers in disaster preparedness scenarios. The real advantage of this facility will be its ability to provide cross training/cooperative real-life training that involves everyday emergencies. This unique factor permits VVC students to take the giant leap from physical training to actual service duty.
The building features an indoor combat shooting range, a gun cleaning room, training simulators, and defensive tactics/physical training areas for Administration of Justice Programs.
Indoor Combat Shooting Range
The size of the combat shooting range is 90’ by 42’ and covered completely in a bullet proof material which by design, will partially absorb stray rounds, eliminate ricochet projectiles, and facilitate expended rounds down range to the collection pit. This material is on the side walls, doors, and ceiling of the range facility to ensure safety for shooters. The collection pit spans the width of the range and holds over 40 tons of rubber fragments along with coating of fire retardant material covering a hardened steel backing. The range was designed as a combat range and therefore, has no target retrieval mechanism or shooting booths. This open floor designed combat shooting range offers more flexibility in developing real-life shooting experiences for law enforcement officers as mobile props can be placed anywhere on the open floor area of the range and moved as necessary.
The range has a state-of-the art air filtration system, which virtually removes all expended lead and ancillary particles from the air through a whole air flow system which begins at the rear of the range and flows to the front ventilation system. This system is designed to remove any air particles forward of the shooter and filter out the ventilation system, reducing exposure to the shooter.
Gun Cleaning Room
The range is also equipped with an adjacent gun cleaning room, which also has a similar vacuum ventilation system, stainless steel work benches and gun repair and cleaning equipment. It also has a range master office, which houses all weapons and associated range equipment including: “state of the art” noise reduction communication ear phones, accompanying radio and push to talk microphone. The range master office also serves as the distribution center for all equipment to be used on the range and it houses several technological devices, i.e., “Milo Shoot-Don’t Shoot” simulator and the “Super Trap” targeting system.
Milo is a 3 “D” projection scenario program when projected on a screen in the range, students decide which course of action to take “shoot or don’t shoot” based on the circumstances demonstrated. These scenarios may be altered by the instructor with a hand-held control device while adjacent the student. This flexibility in programming serves to challenge the student’s analytical and problem solving skills while offering a “real life like” exigent circumstance decision making experience. Scenarios may be run by the instructor in laser format with range weapons or in live fire with the student’s weapon.
The Super Trap targeting system consists of ten hardened steel (adjustable) electronically controlled target holders mounted vertically on the ceiling adjacent the target trap. These holders are designed to deflect oncoming projectiles into the range trap and they also hold the targets in place. The range master has the option of pre-loading a program to turn all or selected targets in a pre-designed manner to show “good guy” vs. “bad guy” images by the touch of a remote controlled button. The targets have the option of turning 180 or 360 degrees to show either image. Students then must decide to “shoot or don’t shoot” based on their observations and analysis of the target. The Super Trap target holders are designed to re-set themselves in the event of a malfunction caused by an unbalanced target or when the holder is struck by a projectile. This technology allows the range master to continue with the shoot and he/she is not forced to delay the shoot to repair or re-set the target device. Super Trap will also be installing a “Running Man” horizontal target system, which will run the width of the range in the range trap area. This system will allow students another shooting (target acquisition) dimensional challenge as the target moves in the manner a person would while running from a crime scene. The range trap area also contains sensors to evaluate the amount of lead building up in each area (lanes). The sensor sends an electronic message to the range master regarding the condition of the accumulated lead and recommends that lane or lanes be shut down and evacuated.
Additionally, the combat range has two large doors, which open to the exterior of the facility and are used for the ingress of police vehicles for shooting props and other large movable props. These doors weigh approximately 1200 pounds apiece; however, they can be manipulated quite easily by anyone. The range office safety windows and exterior windows (hall way) are made of level #7 glass, which will withstand several rounds of high caliber weapon strikes, yet they are clear for the purposes of auditing any firearms training in the range. The range ceiling has several layers of lighting, which may be dimmed by the instructor to simulate various lighting conditions found outside. It also has two emergency lights on the ceiling near the rear of the range that may be used to simulate a law enforcement traffic stop or emergency situation. The range also has an intercom system to communicate with observers not wearing head gear who may be in the range area. The range ingress is limited to one door near the range master office and notwithstanding the aforementioned exterior doors and one emergency exit, the only egress is through the same door near the range office. This ingress-egress system was developed to ensure the safety of all students and equipment.
Defensive Tactics/Physical Training Area
The Defensive Tactics/Physical Training area is approximately 1200 square-foot class room with 14 ‘ceilings. The room contains a ceiling-mounted projector for the use of the “Milo System” offering presentations in use of force decision making scenarios projected on a wall. This training area also contains permanent combat mats with fifty storage “cubbies” for student clothing and equipment. This area is also equipped with audio and visual surveillance equipment recorded in the center’s computer hard drive for safety and historical purposes. Adjacent the training area are two instructor offices, which have windows for auditing capabilities in both the range and the Defensive Tactics/Physical Training areas.
The complex also includes office space, classrooms, conference rooms, four apparatus bays, a fire tower, burn rooms, a prop yard with a tanker rail car, an overturned tanker truck, a low angle rope rescue prop, a collapsed building, and a confined space/trench prop.
Victor Valley College Regional Public Safety Training Center (VVCRPSTC)
Cost: $31.5 million; financing from Measure JJ bond funds
Location: 19190 Navajo Road, Apple Valley, CA 92307
Project awarded: August 11, 2009
Construction start: August 12, 2010
Project completed: October 2011
Architect: Carrier-Johnson Architects
Contractor: Highland Partnership
Opening: February 2012
Facility Size: Nine-acre campus including a four-acre prop yard for training; 41,500 square feet of building complexes, classrooms, etc.
- Recognized as a Gold LEED facility by the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED)
- Facility features a 230kW solar photovoltaic (PV) system, consisting of rooftop panels and solar covered carports providing up to 80 percent of the building’s total electricity demand.
- 4692 SF apparatus bay
- (4) bay doors east/west (drive thru)
- (2) 567 SF storage rooms
- Solar Panels located in parking lot and on roof of Building A and C
- Prop yard
- 5 Story Fire tower 4+ burn rooms Propane and Class A
- Drafting Pit with Cone water flow calibration
- Standpipe trainer
- Fire training Connex trailer
- Roof ventilation prop
- Rail Tanker Prop
- Collapsed Building prop
- Confined Space/trench prop
- Underground tunnel prop various size pipe
- Low Angle rescue prop
- Rubble pile
- CERT (Citizens Emergency Response Team) City
- House with Bedroom/living room facing West
- Café with outdoor patio seating NW corner
- Office N
- Bank N
- Warehouse N
- Convenience store NE corner
- Jail East
- 2 cells
- Processing desk
- 15 classrooms, including 12 smart classrooms, providing seating for 368 students
- Two student lounges
- Computer lab
- Video production lab
- Outdoor courtyard
- “N” level wireless network
The VVCRPSTC offers a state-of-the-art facility that facilitates a dynamic, multi-agency learning environment for disaster training by incorporating the following disciplines: Fire Science, EMT, Paramedics, Administration of Justice, SWAT and Corrections. Future plans for the VVCRPSTC include the development of cooperative and contract ventures to expand educational and training opportunities for local and regional public safety entities, corporate safety personnel, community organizations, and governmental agencies.