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Fla. paramedics train alongside police officers for better response to active shootings

The training ended with an exercise involving mock shooting victims, allowing medics to refine skills such as wound packing


C3 Pathways / NCIER

By Sarah Roebuck

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Paramedics took part in a training alongside police officers to better prepare for saving lives in the event there is an active shooter.

The first responders took part in a three-day active shooter training in Tallahassee, the Tallahassee Democrat reports.

The Gordon Center at the University of Miami has collaborated with the Florida Public Safety Institute at Tallahassee Community College to establish Florida’s first regional hub, aimed at providing joint training opportunities.

Developed at the university and financed by a grant from the Florida Department of Education, the course is available at no cost to local governments interested in providing it.

Typically, in active shooter situations, the process unfolds in stages: Initially, police officers mitigate the danger, followed by paramedics entering once the area is secure.

“And as we know from past history, the only way we’re going to be able to save a life is if we are able to interject that medic into that environment within minutes,” Al Brotons, director of training operations at the University of Miami’s Gordon Center, told the Tallahassee Democrat.

Monday’s training concluded with a realistic drill at the old Gretna Elementary School, where Gadsden County High students acted as shooting victims. This mock exercise helped medics to refine skills like needle decompression and wound packing, with the use of tourniquets emphasized due to military input in the course development, according to Brotons.