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Active Shooter Drill at Sacramento Int’l Airport Helps Prepare First Responders

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SACRAMENTO --

About 200 participants from 14 different agencies are taking part in the largest ever active shooter drill at Sacramento International Airport.

To make this as realistic as possible, the weapons officers will be armed with will be loaded with blanks and makeup will help pretend casualties look like actual ones.

It took 16 months of planning to organize a full-scale exercise designed to help Sac International be prepared for what surprised LAX two years ago.

On Nov. 1, 2013, Paul Ciancia allegedly walked into LAX , pulled out a .223 caliber assault rifle and shot a TSA agent to death.

He allegedly fired on two other uniformed TSA employees and an airline passenger near a security checkpoint before being shot and then cuffed airport police.

The after-action report  found LAX's multi-million radio system didn't serve responders well that day -- taking 45 minutes to merge together multiple command posts into one central hub.

Those kind of problems have already been strategized for  in Sacramento.

"We've got an operations center. You've got unified command where all the info comes in, as well, so everything's more streamlined in terms of communication. That's why we had this training," said Deputy Tony Turnbull with the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department.

Passengers in Terminal B may see flashing lights and emergency personnel when all this gets started at midnight at Terminal A, but this is just a drill.

At the start, all flights to Terminal A should be over.

If one is delayed, it will be diverted to Terminal B.

The exercise itself should run from midnight until 3 a.m.