At the sound of gunshots, emergency responders take their positions. It used to be that S.W.A.T team members, only, went directly into an emergency situation.
"The paramedics are trained to stay away from dangerous situations. They do not go in until the scene is safe." said Andy Anderson. He helped facilitate the training at Meridian's Public Safety Training Facility.
That's not the case anymore. Normally in emergency situations, paramedics wait to go inside until the scene is declared safe. With this training, paramedics actually go inside with the S.W.A.T team.
"This is actually training the medic to be a part of the S.W.A.T. team. They go in, they could potentially be in a sitaution where they're treating patients under live fire." said Anderson.
Previously, paramedics did not enter dangerous environments like the S.W.A.T team. Victims had a shorter survival time. Now that paramedics go in, the outcome is different for victims.
"So now that we have paramedics that are on scene that can go in, render care and extract them and get them out, survivability is a lot higher." explained Derek Moore, another facilitator of the training.
The training involved setting up a real life scenario. In this training situation a disgruntled father is making threats against his family. That's when the S.W.A.T team plus paramedics would come to the home. In this drill one of the S.W.A.T members was shot along with one of the children. Since the paramedics were there, hypothetically, they were able to take care of the wounded immediately.
"Well the reason why is because you never can tell when a situation like this may arise. The only way that you're going to be able to do this successfully and safely is if you work with the S.W.A.T team and practice with the S.W.A.T team." said Anderson.
Those doing and participating in the training said it allows paramedics and S.W.A.T. team members to get victims out of hostage situations and on their way to the hospital more efficiently.