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SIOUX CITY -- Local emergency personnel on Wednesday practiced their response to a scenario they hope they never see.

The Sioux City Police Department, Sioux City Fire Rescue, Woodbury County Sheriff's Office and Woodbury County Emergency Management, in cooperation with the Sioux City Community School District, conducted a full-scale active killer exercise at North High School after classes had dismissed for the day.

In the scenario posed to emergency responders, a student's father who was upset with another student entered the school with firearms and began shooting. Police and specialists practiced their response to such an emergency, and rescue personnel were able to gain experience in removing victims and transporting them to the hospital.

"I think it went well," Sioux City Police Lt. Chris Groves said. "In the next couple weeks we'll critique it."

Each agency will evaluate its response, and together the agencies will determine if any changes are needed to their emergency procedures.

"There are things we can do better," Groves said.

School district spokeswoman Mandie Mayo said numerous school staff and students were involved in the exercise to help provide first responders with a more realistic scenario. Earlier in the school year, district staff received training in how to respond to a school shooting, and Wednesday's drill allowed them to practice what they learned, Mayo said.

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