What can you do to assist police when they arrive at the site of an active shooter event?
The priority for law enforcement is to respond to the threat and engage and neutralize the active shooter as soon as possible; all other actions are secondary.
It’s the police’s primary goal to eliminate the threat. Afterwards, the police will give you directions to leave and get medical care.
When Police Arrive
When law enforcement officers arrive at the scene, occupants should (as reinforced through training):
- Follow all instructions from the officers
- Remain calm, think, and resist the urge to panic
- Immediately raise hands and spread fingers
- Keep hands visible at all times
- Put down any items
- Avoid making sudden or quick movements toward officers
- Not point, scream, or yell
- Not ask for help from the officers when evacuating
- Proceed in the direction as advised by the officers
- Provide all relevant information to officers when asked, but do not distract responding officers unless it will assist in identifying the location of the shooter or the location(s) of known explosives or booby traps
What Happens to Active Shooters?
According to FBI data from 2000-2019, the majority of active shooters are apprehended by police, which demonstrates why police should not be distracted. If the gunman isn’t apprehended, the next most common outcome is that they commit suicide or are killed by police. Out of 345 shooters reported from 2000-2019, 150 were apprehended, 119 committed suicide, and 67 were killed. It’s very rare that a civilian kills the gunman or the gunman escapes.
What is Your Company’s Active Shooter Response Plan?
It’s important that employees be trained on how to react when law enforcement arrives and be able to follow their orders so they can de-escalate the situation quickly and efficiently. Your staff can learn this as well as many other potentially lifesaving topics through active shooter preparedness training.
TPOP’s online training course “Think and Survive” provides specialized training for your industry and can be customized in multiple areas including length, location, and the introduction. Your staff will learn about verbal de-escalation, the Run, Hide, Fight methodology, response to injury, and more in less than an hour.