Local first responders participate in active shooter training at East Hills Mall

Posted at 8:52 PM, May 04, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-04 23:52:46-04

Today several local agencies teamed up for an active shooter drill at the East Hills Mall.


"We can only be as prepared as our operation procedures will allow. That's why we're here today, we're making sure that the policies we have in place are addressing the key issues," said Bakersfield Fire Department Battalion Chief John Frando.


The Bakersfield Fire Department, Bakersfield Police Department, Kern County Sheriff’s, CHP and Hall Ambulance were all a part of the training.


More than one hundred Bakersfield College EMT students like Jenna Shepherd played the role of hostages and victims.        


“I was shot twice (yes) in the pelvis, umm so I wasn’t able to walk. I was actually dragged out by fire fighters from the mall all the way to the front,” said Sheperd.   


The realistic simulation also included eight police officers acting as the active shooters while Swat officers stormed the theatre inside searching for more suspects.


The training comes the day after two people were killed in an apparent murder-suicide at a Texas college campus, triggering a campus-wide lockdown as hundreds of officers scoured the campus searching for the shooter.


According to the Tracker's data, which defines a mass shooting as an incident in which at least four people are killed or wounded, there were 372 mass shootings in the U.S. in 2015, killing 475 and wounding 1,870.


The dangers have become all too real for these first responders who are preparing for the worse. 


“We are more prepared than we have been in years passed because we know that this is a real type of an emergency that could happen locally. We just want to get ahead of the game, make sure we are proactive, we have policies and procedures to address this type of emergency, ” said Frando.