MARSHALL COUNTY, Ala. (WHNT) – In the wake of school shootings around the country and the start of a new school year, local agencies are getting prepared for a worst-case scenario.

Friday morning, several law enforcement agencies gathered at Asbury High School to participate in an active shooter scenario. Organizers told News 19 they wanted it to be as realistic as possible.

Marshall County Sheriff Phil Sims said, “For today’s training we had a scenario of a hostage barricade or a shooter turned into a hostage barricade.”

Sims added the purpose of the training is to test inter-agency response and response times. He added that communication is key and that may be an area they need to focus on.

“We saw some things with the radio system, we got a new radio system, that we can improve on somewhat. Just minor things, nothing major. The officers and deputies did a great job.”

One of the hostages in the situation was Asbury High School Principal Clay Webber. He says while the school knew the training was taking place, there were still elements of surprise which added to how realistic it felt.

“We didn’t know the exact time that it was going to take place, we didn’t know the exact scenario….It was very intense. You know going into it I didn’t realize how lifelike it was really going to be,” Webber explained.

Sims says they will continue to do active shooter drills like this throughout the next couple of years.