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FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – Avoid, deny and defend – that’s the strategy being given to civilians taking part in an active shooter response training class in Fort Worth.

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The first of five classes, being taught through a joint effort by the Fort Worth Police and Fire Departments, was held this morning at the Bob Bolen Public Safety Complex.

Course organizers say the sessions, which are free and open to the public, teach individuals about having an exit plan and putting barriers between them and the threat.

Those in attendance watched a power point presentation and listened to 911 calls from actual mass shootings. More than 100 people learned simple steps to stay safe, the importance of paying attention to your surroundings and, if necessary, how to fight to survive.

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Fort Worth Fire Department Lieutenant Michael Rugio said, “This program is a avoid, deny, defend program. Knowing when to avoid a situation, how to deny access to your location against an assailant, and then in a last case scenario defending yourself.”

Each class last two hours and will cover the same material. Topics include the history of active shooter events, the role of professional guardians, and civilian response options.

There are four more sessions scheduled between now and the end of October. Click here to find out more about the training, the dates and times of the sessions, or to sign up.

Anyone wanting to attend the course but is unable to in person can watch the September 17 session live online.

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