KENDALL, Fla. -

Gunshots rang out at a South Florida mall on Thursday morning as part of a training exercise for local and federal law enforcement.

Miami-Dade and Pinecrest police participated in the drill at Dadeland Mall, giving their officers to practice their response to radio calls for an active shooter.

"To be able to be here, it gives us a real-life feeling," said Miami-Dade police Sgt. John Barrow.

Four new public information officers, who serve as the liason between the Police Department and media, also practiced answering questions.

Other officers evaluated the participants on their response time and communication.

"In situations like this with multi-agency, it's good to speak plain English and it's good to keep the media and the public informed," said Barrow. "As we practice and enhance, we hope to make this community safer by knowing what to do if the real thing were to happen."