Active shooter drill mistaken for actual active shooter at Tyndall Air Force Base

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7 p.m. UPDATE: TYNDALL AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. (WMBB) — Dozens of local and state law enforcement officers converged on Tyndall Air Force Base Tuesday morning after reports of an active shooter.

Turns out someone mistook an active shooter drill for the real thing.

Law enforcement from almost every agency in Bay County as well as state agencies responded to Tyndall Tuesday morning. 

Although we now know Tyndall was conducting a drill, when law enforcement got word of the possible situation they acted fast. 

Dozens of bystanders like Chrristoper Haysmith and Garrett Patt lined Tyndall Parkway curious about the situation. 

“We saw a bunch of cops rushing to Tyndall,” Patt said. “We didn’t know they were going to Tyndall but we saw them rushing and wanted to know what the commotion was about.”

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Within minutes detupties, police officers, firefighters and ems teams swarmed to Tyndall’s air operations center where the active shooter was supposedly barricaded inside.

Then they found out the base was conducting an active shooter drill about an hour later. 

Lt. Joseph Harclerode, a Public Affairs Officer for Tyndall, said they regularly have these trainings to ensure readiness. 

“In a real world scenario we would like to be as prepared as we can if something actually happened so that’s why we do these,” Harclerode said. “During the exercise there was a real world 911 call made.” 

But somehow the information that this was a drill did not reach local law enforcement. 

Although there was a miscommunication – some bay county residents are proud of the response from law enforcement.

Some comments on Tyndall’s facebook post read “to see such a strong presence rush into a potentially dangerous situation is impressive,”  and “real world exercise allows for real world response.”

Bay County Sheriff Tommy Ford said they have been emphasizing tactics in active shooter situations, considering the increase in those incidents.

Ford said his deputies put that training to work Tuesday and he’s proud of his deputies. 

“It was a confusing situation but standing back and looking at it I could see that our work to try and get everyone on the same page in response to these is really paying off,” Ford said. 

Both Sheriff Ford and Tyndall Air Force base officials also want to say thank the public for their support. 

Sheriff Ford said as the law enforcement cars flew down the streets everyone on the road moved over quickly and respected the situation. 

11 a.m. UPDATE: TYNDALL AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. (WMBB) — Tyndall Air Force Base issued a response to the incident on their Facebook page.

Tyndall Air Force Base

“This morning Tyndall Air Force Base was conducting an active shooter exercise. These exercises are conducted regularly to test our response to ongoing threats. During the exercise, a real world 911 call was made from an adjacent building that resulted in a response by the 325th Security Forces Squadron as well as local law enforcement and first responders. First responders have cleared the building, ensured there was no threat, and the all clear was issued. We have resumed normal operations at this time.”

10:30 a.m. UPDATE: TYNDALL AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. (WMBB) — An active shooter drill at a local base was mistaken for an actual active shooter Tuesday morning leading to dozens of law enforcement cars, firetrucks, and ambulances responding to the base.

Tyndall Air Force Base Spokesman Scott Johnson said that the base was conducting an active shooter drill and that somehow, the information that it was a drill did not reach the law enforcement agencies who responded.

Original story:

TYNDALL AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. (WMBB) — A heavy police presence was at Tyndall Air Force Base Tuesday after an active shooter was reported at the base.

Several sources have confirmed that the incident was underway. No further details have been reported at this time. As more information becomes available we will report it here.

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