Law enforcement prepares for mass shooting crisis scenario

By KBJR News 1

June 11, 2014 Updated Jun 11, 2014 at 10:36 PM CDT

Duluth, MN (NNCNOW.com)--- Concern about the potential for a mass shooting has prompted Duluth authorities and emergency responders to train for an active shooter crisis situation.

There have been 74 school shootings since the Sandy Hook Elementary massacre just 18 months ago... a startling number that has authorities around the nation and in the Northland preparing for a worst case scenario

"Active shooter is not an uncommon thing in our country. We have been training as individual agencies for our response for this type of event for awhile. Columbine put this event on the map," said Sgt. Robert Shene, with the Duluth Police Dept.

A multi-agency mock training exercise designed to prepare law enforcement for the "darkest day" imaginable in Duluth... Two shooters..23 gunshot victims...explosive devices.

Family members and emergency vehicles swarmed the scene. Lifeflight and State patrol helicopters were also called in.

"God forbid we don't want to ever have to have something like this happen in Duluth, but said when you look at where active shootings have happened, it hasn't been just major cities, often times it's in smaller communities," said Deputy Chief Mike Tusken, with the Duluth Police Dept.

The training was the first coordinated effort between police, fire, and ambulance crews designed to be realistic and test their response to a highly stressful, major emergency event

"Our preparation is really for something we hope never happens of course, but we have to, in this day and age, be much more vigilant and much more occupied in doing trainings that we know are potential threats," said Deputy Chief Tusken.

Tusken says he was pleased with the response, but there are still improvements needed.

Authorities will now hold a debriefing to determine what they did well, and what they can do better.

Written and posted to the web by Raeanna Marnati