An active shooter is someone who fires a weapon at individuals, often in crowded areas and often without a specific victim in mind. Because some of these instances are over quickly before law enforcement officials arrive, knowing how to respond is sometimes the difference between life and death. Several tips are important if an episode occurs with an active shooter.
Evacuate: Find an escape route and evacuate, regardless of whether or not others in the area follow. Leave belongings behind and, if possible, help others escape. Call 911 the moment you are safe and follow the instructions of law enforcement officials.
Hide: If you cannot evacuate, find a place to hide that is outside the view of the shooter. Seek shelter in doorways, behind trees, and behind other obstacles. Be sure not to trap yourself or restrict movement.
Take Action: Aggressive action is solely a last resort only when your life is in immediate danger. Distract the shooter by being aggressive, improvising weapons, and yelling.
When law enforcement arrives, drop anything you may be holding, raise your hands in the air, and spread your fingers. Always keep your hands visible and avoid sudden movements. When given permission, evacuate the premises as directed by the officers. Keep moving and do not stop and ask for help.