Would you know what to do in an active shooter situation?
An active shooter is defined as a gunman or gunmen killing or attempting to kill people in a confined, populated area. Typical targets include malls, schools and office buildings. On average there has been one of these events every 3 months with at least 4 deaths in the U.S. since 2006. But lately they seem to be more frequent.
I am writing this on the 28th of September and in the last week there have been 7 mass shootings! 7 killed and 29 injured.
If you find yourself in an active shooter situation, would you know what to do? Do you have a strategy in place to insure your survival?
Here is a video from the LA County Sheriff on surviving an active shooter. This video walks you through an active shooter situation and the options available to you for survival. The video highlights 3 main options – escape, hide or defend yourself. Escape the situation if possible. Hide using cover and concealment. Defend yourself if you have no other option.
The Springdale, Arkansas police department conducts active shooter training for its citizens. These classes follow the A.L.I.C.E. strategy. A.L.I.C.E. stands for Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter, Evacuate. It is not a linear response to a situation but an acronym for your options. Alert authorities and inform them of as much information as possible – number involved, location, etc. If you are unable to leave the area (evacuate), lockdown in place by barricading all entry/exit points and staying away from windows. Silence all cell phones and remain quiet so you do not alert the shooter to your presence. If you do find yourself having to counter the attacker, anything can be used as an improvised weapon. You want to interrupt the shooter’s ability to cause any more harm.
The main focus for any active shooter situations is your survival. Do not put yourself into unnecessary danger. Help others if you are able to do so.