It looked like a scene out of a movie, a disaster or a worst case scenario at Tucson International Airport. However, the goal was all to make us safer. Hundreds of first responders tested their skills during an emergency response drill that tested just how prepared airport staff and first responders are in the event of a disaster.
The scenario was three gunmen opening fire in the terminal, injuring more than 20 people. Firefighters carried several bodies to receive medical treatment. Of course it was not a real emergency, it was an emergency response drill. Aimed to test the readiness of airport staff and first responders in the event of a disaster. "Active shooters used to be something that was pretty few and far between, but they are becoming more and more prevalent in our society nowadays," CEO of Tucson Airport Authority John Ivanoff said.
Although everyone knew the disaster was a drill, they treated it like a real-life scenario. Hundreds of student volunteers wore makeup and used props and played the roles of victims. Agencies such as Tucson Airport Police and fire, Tucson Police Department, Tucson Fire Department and Pima County Sheriff's teamed up to help. "It's not so much that you think it's going to happen tomorrow as much as we need to prepare I case it does," Ivanoff added.
The two-hour exercise is required by the Federal Aviation Administration and is held every three years. First responders say that after the exercise, they are more prepared to protect.