Updated: 06/11/2014 10:44 PM
Created: 06/11/2014 5:14 PM WDIO.com
By: Briggs LeSavage
The Duluth Police Department received some very realistic training Wednesday.
Along with about a dozen other response crews from the city, county and state, the Duluth police answered a fake scanner call around 8:30 a.m. with reports of an active shooter inside the Comfort Systems building on Garfield Avenue in Duluth, all part of an emergency response training exercise.
It took more than one year and 200 people to make the scenario happen, but Duluth Police Deputy Officer Mike Tusken said the effort was worth it in order to better prepare their officers for large-scale emergencies.
"Today's training certainly shows we are ready for a response in some areas, and there are some areas that we need to shore up on and improve on, which is truly the reason we had this exercise is to see and assess what we do well and what we can do better for next time," Tusken said.
In order for that to happen, Tusken said it was important for the scene to be as realistic as possible. This included dealing with victims, their families and the media alongside the active threat happening inside the buuilding.
"The stress was palpable," Tusken said. "You could feel that, you could see it on our officers' faces. They didn't act much differently than I would anticipiate them acting in a real event."
One of the training scenario's main goals was to help the department learn coordination with outside response crews, which Sargeant Bob Shene said is incredibly important in these situations.
"It's a multi-agency, community coordinated response to these events to be successful, so we have to be able to work together to do that.
Following the training, Duluth Police spokeman Jim Hansen said within the coming week, those involved plan to take a close look at just how the training scenario went and will then make any necessary adjustments.
Duluth Woman Injured when Truck Drives Off I-35
The Minnesota State Patrol says a 23-year-old Duluth woman was injured when the truck she was driving went over the barrier on I-35 and down an embankment.
Ice Fisherman's Body Found in Northern Wisconsin Lake
A 77-year-old man's body was found in a lake in northern Wisconsin Sunday morning after not returning home from fishing the previous day. Louis Bickel of Mason had gone ice fishing on Perch Lake in the Town of Drummond in southern Bayfield County on Saturday, according to the Bayfield County Sheriff's Office.
Hermantown, St. Scholastica Grad to Bike Across Country for Mental Health
David Romano, 23, is about to begin the trip of a lifetime. He will bike from San Francisco to Washington D.C., stopping along the way to share his story and raise awareness of mental health. It's a trip, Romano says, never done before for mental health.
SWAT Teams Converge on Duluth for Specialized Training
Duluth is playing host to one of the largest special operations trainings for SWAT team members in the Midwest. The three-day specialized training in everything from crisis negotiation to hostage rescue comes only once a year.
2 Killed in Crash of Piper Cub Plane in Northern Minnesota
Two people have died in the crash of a small plane south of the Pine River airport in north-central Minnesota. The National Transportation Safety Board says the crash of the single-engine Piper Cub J-4A was reported just after 6:30 p.m. Friday