ST. MARTIN PARISH, La. (KLFY) — Detectives with the St. Martin Parish Sheriff’s Office have stepped into the virtual world to get better prepared for emergencies.

There is now a virutal-reality simulator set up at the shooting range.

Ranger Master, Lieutenant Todd Noel says Sheriff Becket Breaux is very big on training and saw this as a useful investment for the agency.

“Sure, you can learn it in the academy, but you are not going to experience it like this. This is as real as it gets.”

The realistic simulation includes multiple scenarios to train for, including an active school shooter, regular target practice, a shooter in a courtroom and more situations where a threat is possible.

The simulator prepares deputies for more than just taking out a perpetrator. As Lieutenant Noel says, quick thinking circumstances are just as important.

“There are people running out,” Noel says. “We don’t know who they are. We have to identify them in a split second and make sure they are not a bad guy. If we can’t reason with them and he is shooting at us already then we have to do what we have to do.”

He says the most important thing is safety for the sake of the community and the future of law enforcement.

“So, we are trying to keep our children safe and our public safe and I believe this machine is what’s helping us get to that.”