Cries for help in this scene look real, but it’s actually an exercise scenario: An active shooter is on the loose, and dozens are already been shot.
“It was just really intense, (with) them yelling get down, ‘Get out, get out,'” says acting student Lauren Senclair.
In an active scenario situation, the team has already moved in. They use fake vests and fake guns to get in the middle of all the action.
In this scene, people may have already been injured or killed, but the goal is for the first responders to destabilize the threat in order to prevent any further casualties and to quickly help anyone in need.
“There is a need for immediate treatment (and) to get them out of the danger area,” says Hank Christen, consultant with Active Shooter 360.
Local law enforcement and fire and rescue teams from Okaloosa County participated in the training exercise.
Even though nothing of this magnitude has happened in this area, they believe preparation is key. They say taking the train outside the classroom will ensure that if it ever does happen, they’ll be ready.
“This is the kind of situation that you can’t learn by watching a power point presentation,” says Christen.
The emergency drill provided an important lesson for the “victims” in the scenario as well.
“It showed that anything can happen at any time and (that) the responders who came to the scene have to be ready at all times,” says senior actor Liam Power.
“They were really trying to save us, even though we weren’t really in danger.”