Should you invest in active assailant training?

What’s the true measure of risk?

In your workplace, you may take pride in upholding protocols that keep your employees and customers generally safe. You may feel unsure about implementing active assailant training when your workplace has been safe so far without it.

Is it worth training for an event that might never happen? It’s common to think that of all the workplaces, houses of worship, or schools in the US, an active shooter event won’t happen at yours. While your risk may seem low, risk shouldn’t be calculated based solely on the probability of an event. Risk is a product of probability, vulnerability, and consequences.


You may judge that the likelihood of an active shooter event happening to you is low, however, active shooter events are increasing each year. There have been 652 mass shootings so far this year, the highest total ever recorded by Gun Violence Archive. Even the lockdown of 2020 didn’t slow this rising trend. According to SHRM, “Despite the initial lockdown response to COVID-19, the number of active shooter incidents rose 20 percent in 2020, and it is already 20 percent higher in 2021. The growing number of attacks continues a disturbing and dangerous decades-long upward trend.” So, while your probability of an active assailant in your workplace may be low, it is rising.


In terms of vulnerability, there are many “soft targets” that are vulnerable to an attack. The active assailant’s goal is to generally kill as many people as possible in the shortest amount of time. Their prime targets are soft targets with large numbers of people. These include mass gatherings and workplaces open to the public, such as retail stores, entertainment venues, restaurants, and houses of worship.

Here are some stats from the FBI’s 2000-2019 Active Shooter Report:

  • Out of a total of 333 active shooter events examined in the last 20 years, 96 were at businesses open to the public
  • 44 occurred at schools
  • 36 at retail locations
  • 14 at restaurants
  • 15 at houses of worship

If you’re wondering about your potential vulnerability, ask yourself, do you work in or patronize any environment like retail stores, restaurants, grocery stores, theaters, performing arts venues or any mass gathering? If you answered “yes,” you may be vulnerable and at greater risk.


The consequences of violent events like these are grave. People may be killed, injured, and traumatized. Your workforce is affected, your workplace becomes a crime scene, and there’s no guarantee you’ll be able to open again. There are also numerous financial consequences, such as paying for damages, counseling for your staff, and the costs of any lawsuits.

After the 2017 Las Vegas shooting at Mandalay Bay, MGM Resorts International paid $800 million in a lawsuit filed by victims’ families. Broward County spent $1.2 million after the 2017 shooting at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport in repairs and compensation.

Every organization has an obligation, as set forth in the OSHA General Duty Clause, to keep your workplace safe from reasonable threats. According to SHRM, only 53% of people who haven’t taken workplace violence training know what to do. If your employees don’t know what to do, their chances of survival decrease. Your employees are counting on you to keep them safe, which is why active assailant online training is a must.

Superior Active Assailant Online Training

Typical stand-up training fails to reach everyone, and the learning isn’t documented. TPOP’s “Think and Survive” active assailant online training can be taken anywhere, anytime, on any internet enabled device, and your employees’ progress is documented and tracked. Topics include situational awareness, de-escalation techniques, Run, Hide, Fight, response to injury and more. Taught by subject matter experts such as nationally recognized safety and security veterans, including former officials from the DHS, FBI, law enforcement, SWAT, behavioral psychologists, and trauma EMTs, the course contains small videos with quizzes at the end of each section to ensure comprehension.

Let’s talk about preparedness and your organization’s risk. Contact TPOP today.