PARMA, Idaho -- With real situations unfolding in Boston, the small Idaho town of Parma just happened to have scheduled today an active shooting scenario at Parma High School.
While it was just training, the images and sounds were very life like, and a good tool for police to use to train for the future.
Parma Police Chief Albert Erickson started planning this training in January, shortly after police wrapped up the investigation of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting.
He and the school district realized their training wasn't sufficient.
We're looking at things based upon rational behavior. And in all these instances, we're seeing irrational behavior, said Erickson.
That's why Erickson had two men play the roll of shooters, one upset with his girlfriend, a teacher.
Students were involved in this drill, pretending to be injured or dead.
This could happen at any time so we should all be prepared for it, said Erika Homburg, a senior at Parma High School.
But once the guns started firing, many realized they weren't prepared enough.
We think we know what to do, but until you're in that situation, you're not sure how you will respond, said Parma High School Principal David Carson.
The shooters, firing blanks, gunned down students caught in the halls.
Other students cowered in bathroom stalls, pleading for their lives.
An officer who was first on scene realized that he too needs to be more prepared after failing to clear the area behind him, a mistake, that if this were real, would have cost him his life.
Paramedics and firefighters were also on hand to help those who were injured.
Less than an hour after the scenario began, both shooters were in custody.
Erickson says some mistakes were made, but that was the point of the training, figure out where the mistakes are before this scenario, heaven forbid, is real.
The biggest thing I learned, we have a ways to go, said Erickson.
The police chief says this training was good, but not great. And they're going to need to go back and review this to make sure in the future, it is great.
Once police are able to review everything, the plan is to do a scenario similar to this one again so that officers can continue to perfect their skills.