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Active Shooter

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Basically the headline of your newsfeed recently. From tragedy to truly horrifying, these events have touched each of us as Americans in some way. The families and friends of the victims most directly and possibly just as impactful on the first responders and the survivors. As the circle grows from these folks, you have most of the nation. Anger. Fear. Outrage. Sadness. Denial. Frustration. Contempt. Some of us have felt all these, some have felt more, some have only dabbled in a few. Unless you’re living under a rock or so far off the grid, you know about Vegas. Texas. California. The ones that reached national news. And each of you had a reaction.

Your reaction is what I want to talk about today. But not what you feel after. We are going to talk about what to do during.

Most of the nation has a general idea of what firearms are and what they look like. A smaller portion have fired them, an even smaller portion own one or more. Legality of ownership aside, I want to help focus you in to an active shooter. That is, a person or persons armed with firearms attempting to cause serious harm or death to others.

Throw out your notions of being the hero. You’re not The Negotiator. You’re not John McClain. And IF by some miracle you are a Stephen Willeford, thanks for being in the right place at the right time and having the fortitude to take action.

The right place and time are crucial during an active shooter. Ideally the right place and time is ANYWHERE else at the moment its happening. That unfortunately may not always be the case. So what should you do?

You should stay aware of your environment. If you hear a car backfire multiple times in succession, you should consider that it might not be a car. Identify if there is a deadly scenario unfolding. Then decide if you can get out or if you have to shelter in place. If you have to hide do so as if a scary monster is looking for you, but the only senses he has are sight and sound. Lock doors. Barricade if you have time. Close curtains if you can. Stay quiet.

Your goal is to protect yourself and those around you. Create boundaries between you and the shooter(s). Keep everyone calm and quiet. If you can reasonably determine that you have a chance to escape, you can escape. DO NOT attempt to evacuate if you are safe AND your actions will endanger others.

Saving the day is your last resort. When you have no other means to protect yourself, escape, hide, or barricade-then you should resist with all possible force. When the gun is pointed at you, everything is a weapon.

During or after an active shooter first responders may come across you or your location. The singular most important thing you can do is show you are not a threat. Raise your hands. Don’t run to or from the responders. Remain quiet and remain vigilant.

If you have evacuated the area and can call for first responders, remain calm and try to identify the location and description of the shooter(s) and how many possible victims there are.

Remember that you can help yourself and others by keeping a cool head and making good timely choices.

For more information go to: https://www.dhs.gov/private-citizen

If you have any questions about this or any other topics I’ve discussed, feel free to contact us on Facebook, email, or here under the Contact Us page.

Stay safe. Stay vigilant.