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Elementary school teachers in South Carolina were trained to recognize the sound of gunshots


Elementary school teachers in South Carolina prepared themselves last Friday for a training session that unlike any other they had done before - an active shooter situation.

The faculty at Cane Bay Elementary was prepared to participate in this training months ago but it is now more timely and relevant given last week's mass shooting in a Florida high school that killed 17.

"We shoot blank rounds of different calibers from different locations in the school so that the faculty can hear what live gunfire sounds like inside a building front different distances," said Captain Dave Aarons with the Goose Creek Police Department. "It gives them better options in terms of whether or not they should run or hide or certainly fight if somebody is right there."

Teachers huddled in a classroom while law enforcement fired rounds of shots with a handgun and assault rifles. The idea is to train their ears to recognize the sound, a lot of times the sound can be easily mistaken as something else.

"Somebody drops a book, somebody slams a locker, somebody closes the door loud," said Sheriff Duane Lewis. "This is to prepare the teachers and the principals for those sounds so they know what a gunshot sounds like inside of a building. A lot of folks have not been exposed to that."

Officials walked them through various scenarios and encouraged them to think outside the box.

The demonstration was not mandatory, but several hundred faculty members signed up for it. At times it was emotional, some cried as they placed themselves in such a terrifying scenario.

The last school shooting demonstration at Cane Bay Elementary was two years ago. District officials said they are considering making it an annual event.

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