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Active Shooter

Be Informed

  • Sign up for an active shooter training.
  • If you see something, say something to the authorities right away.
  • Sign up to receive local emergency alerts and register your contact information with any work-sponsored alert system.
  • Be aware of your environment and any possible dangers.

Make a Plan

  • Make a plan with your family and make sure everyone knows what to do if confronted with an active shooter.
  • Wherever you go look for the two nearest exits, have an escape path in mind and identify places you could hide if necessary.
  • Understand the plans for individuals with disabilities or other access and functional needs.

During

RUN and escape if possible.

  • Getting away from the shooter or shooters is the top priority.
  • Leave your belongings behind and get away.
  • Help others escape, if possible, but evacuate regardless of whether others agree to follow.
  • Warn and prevent individuals from entering an area where the active shooter may be.
  • Call 9-1-1 when you are safe and describe the shooter, location and weapons.

HIDE if escape is not possible.

  • Get out of the shooter’s view and stay very quiet.
  • Silence all electronic devices and make sure they won’t vibrate.
  • Lock and block doors, close blinds and turn off lights.
  • Don’t hide in groups. Spread out along walls or hide separately to make it more difficult for the shooter.
  • Try to communicate with police silently. Use text message or social media to tag your location or put a sign in a window.
  • Stay in place until law enforcement gives you the all clear.
  • Your hiding place should be out of the shooter's view and provide protection if shots are fired in your direction.

FIGHT as an absolute last resort.

  • Commit to your actions and act as aggressively as possible against the shooter.
  • Recruit others to ambush the shooter with makeshift weapons like chairs, fire extinguishers, scissors, books, etc.
  • Be prepared to cause severe or lethal injury to the shooter.
  • Throw items and improvise weapons to distract and disarm the shooter.

After

  • Keep hands visible and empty.
  • Know that law enforcement’s first task is to end the incident and they may have to pass injured along the way.
  • Officers may be armed with rifles, shotguns or handguns and may use pepper spray or tear gas to control the situation.
  • Officers will shout commands and may push individuals to the ground for their safety.
  • Follow law enforcement instructions and evacuate in the direction they come from unless otherwise instructed.
  • Take care of yourself first, and then you may be able to help the wounded before first responders arrive.
  • If the injured are in immediate danger, help get them to safety.
  • While you wait for first responders to arrive, provide first aid. Apply direct pressure to wounded areas and use tourniquets if you have been trained to do so.
  • Turn wounded people onto their sides if they are unconscious and keep them warm.
  • Consider seeking professional help for you and your family to cope with the long-term effects of the trauma.

Associated Content

Last Updated: 04/22/2020