Safety Tips Workplace violence

Know how to react in an active shooter situation

National Safety Month: Week 3

Image: ErmanCivic/iStockphoto

An active shooter situation is a worst-case scenario many people don’t want to think about, but it’s important to be prepared. The Department of Homeland Security notes that active shooter situations often evolve quickly. Would you know what to do?

To help prepare for an active shooter situation, DHS recommends you stay alert for danger no matter where you are, and know where the two nearest exits are at all times.

However, if you find yourself involved in an active shooter situation, follow these instructions from DHS:

  • Run to a safe place immediately. Leave your belongings behind.
  • If you’re unable to run, hide. If you’re somewhere with a door, lock it or barricade it shut. Silence all electronic devices.
  • Call 911 when you can safely do so.
  • As a last resort, try to incapacitate the shooter. In close-range cases, fighting increases your chance of survival.

Emergency response

At some point during or after an active shooter situation, emergency responders will be on the scene. To help law enforcement when it arrives, do your best to remain calm and follow all instructions. Don’t scream or yell, and keep your hands raised above your head and free of any objects. Evacuate as quickly as possible.

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