Wiregrass Public Safety Center holds grand opening

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DOTHAN, Ala. (WDHN) — The Wiregrass Public Safety Center held its grand opening Tuesday morning.

It’s a $23 million public safety center that law enforcement, EMS, and fire departments can use to train their employees and also train the public on safety.

“Our entire training staff will work here,” Dothan Fire Chief Larry Williams said. “They have offices here and engines and police officers will rotate and do their daily training through here like we normally do.”

The facility has multiple training areas for different police, EMS, and fire to run through different scenarios. One of those is a shooting simulator that gives training in hostile situations or home defense.

These simulations are controlled by someone behind a computer that escalate or deescalate the situation.

“One is basically a shoot don’t shoot scenario based system,” Dothan Police Chief Steven Parrish said. “The other is where you have to navigate through obstacles and actually engage, engage targets.”

The facility also has a building called the safety house that gives people an at home experience when an emergency happens. The house isn’t just a model, everything inside it works. The house will be not only be used for professionals, but also school students.

“They’ll be able to go to an app, figure out in their classrooms what a safety escape plan might look like, and then take a school bus and come in out here and that center will be set up the same way they design their plan,” Wiregrass Foundation President Barbara Alford said.

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