DIGITAL EXCLUSIVE: Call leads to mistaken active shooting response at Tyndall

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PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WMBB) — News 13 has exclusively obtained the phone call that led to a massive law enforcement response to Tyndall Air Force Base on Tuesday.

An airman at Tyndall’s fire department called the Sheriff’s Office Administration line at the Bay County Emergency Operations Center (EOC) to report a “real-world” active shooting situation. However, there never was an active shooter at Tyndall. Instead, it was a training exercise.

The call lasted almost three minutes.

During the call, the airman reiterated to the operator that it was a “real-world” situation and not a drill, even though the operator asked if it was the scheduled drill.

The operator later informed him that the security forces told the department to stand down because it was a drill, not a real-world situation.

The airman said the Tyndall police called it “real-world” and wanted to notify the EOC of the situation.

This is the second time in a week that an active shooter drill on a U.S. military base was mistaken for the real thing.

Watch the video above or continue reading below for the full transcription of the phone call:

Operator: Hello?

Caller: Yes ma’am, can you hear me? 

O: Yes. How can I help you?

C: Hi, this is XXX with Tyndall Fire Department. We have a possible active shooter on base.

O: Is it the drill? Is it the drill, or is it real?

C: Real-world, real-world.

O: Real-world? Okay. Give me the information again.

C: Uh, yes ma’am. It is, uh, it’s gonna be a building 485. The only thing we know right now is that shots were fired in 486. You should have your crews go through Tyndall gates and then have them turn left on Florida Avenue. And then they’re going to stay on Dixie and Florida where all the fire trucks are.

O: Left on Florida Ave… How many people?

C: At this time, we don’t have a (indistinct) count.

O: You don’t have what? I’m sorry.

C: We don’t have a count of how many people.

O: Unknown count?

C: Yeah, unknown.

O: Address is on base, building 485, shots are fired. Come in which gate?

C: Um, come through the Florida gate. Um, Tyndall gate, sorry.

O: Main gate is the first gate we come in?

C: Left on Florida Ave.

O: I’ve got Tyndall Airmen on the phone. You’re with police right?

C: Um, I’m with fire.

O: Okay, you’re with fire?

C: Yes ma’am.

O: Okay. Hold on. How are you getting the information?

C: Oh, it’s coming through. We work with the police. 

O: Okay, so security forces told us to stand down for now. They believe it’s part of their drill they’re doing next door. Are you guys aware of that?

C: Okay, yes, they are doing a drill. They just said it was real-world, so we were sending out a notification.

O: You guys are sending out official notifications?

C: We were sending out notifications for you guys to get some ambulances, because we were told that it’s real-world.

O: Okay, so can you talk to the law enforcement that’s there telling us to stand down?

C: Yes ma’am, I will.

O: All right, and then call us back and let us know, okay?

C: Will do.

O: All right, bye.

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