GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — The next generation of paramedics are preparing for the worst. Wednesday, Life EMS Ambulance hosted mock mass casualty training in Grand Rapids.

During a mass casualty event, like a serious car crash, the situation can become hectic in a hurry.

“When you get multiple patients on scene, things get a little chaotic and disorganized,” said Patrick Cooney Davis, a field training coordinator with Life EMS Ambulance.

Wednesday afternoon, a parking lot near Life EMS Ambulance’s Innovation and Training Centre in Grand Rapids was transformed into a mock mass casualty scene.

Organizers said it helps bridge the gap between the classroom and real life for newly-hired paramedics.

“Mass casualty events are so infrequent that it’s difficult to mentally prepare for it and this kind of provides something for them to visualize,” Cooney Davis said.

Even the actors involved in the training were EMT’s and paramedics, who also took in valuable lessons.

“Seeing the way that things should go from a different side of things, so that they’re also gaining that experience,” Cooney Davis said.

Elyzabeth Martinez, a paramedic, said within the next month she’s hoping to be on her own truck with an EMT partner.

She said she’s never been first on scene of a mass casualty incident and the mock event will help her provide the proper care when an emergency arises.

“Being able to have an extra level of preparedness really helps me feel more comfortable about potentially being in a situation where I’d be in charge of something like this,” Martinez said.

Life EMS Ambulance holds mass casualty trainings twice a year, once in the spring and once in the fall. It is a requirement for all new paramedics.