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First Responders Prepare to Face Mass Shootings

More than 150 law-enforcement officials and fire fighters participated in an active shooter drill at Scripps College on Wednesday.

Wednesday morning’s active shooter drill, featuring members of emergency and law-enforcement personnel, was eerily similar to many other mass shootings.

And that was the point, said drill organizers. Held at Claremont’s Scripps College, the drill brought together four fire departments, including crews from Claremont and La Verne, and members of the Claremont Police and Los Angeles County Sheriff’s department.

Scripps security officers and students joined in by participating in role-playing. They pretended to be victims of a shooter who “opened fire” in front of The Garrison Theater of the Claremont Colleges.

A SWAT team was used and two helicopters were flown in to allow a military law response in which law-enforcement officers repelled down. Victims were carried out on backboards to a triage area.

“No one wants to ever be faced with this type of situation,” said Inspector Brian Riley, Los Angeles County Fire public information officer. “But that’s why we train. If we ever are faced with this situation we’ll be prepared.”

Though there were echoes of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in the event had been in the planning stages for month before the December shooting, Riley said.

The drill continues today and Friday. Access in the area will be limited. Scripps officials advise people to go around the area of Dartmouth Avenue and 10th Street.

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