2024 Active Shooter Action Plan – Run, Hide, Fight

2024 Active Shooter Action Plan - Run, Hide, Fight

Finding yourself in an active shooter situation is every person’s worst nightmare. But mentally preparing ahead of time might just save your life.

This guide shares crucial strategies I’ve learned for maximizing your chances of making it through alive.

Run The Minute An Active Shooter Is In The Area!

If an active shooter enters the scene, your first instinct may be to hide. But escaping the area immediately gives you the greatest chance of survival according to experts.

Don’t wait around confused. Don’t try to grab lots of stuff. Just run for the nearest exit as fast as you possibly can. Assist others in getting out if you can do so quickly. But getting yourself to safety is priority number one.

Once at a distance from the shooter, call 911 right away. Provide details like the shooter’s location and appearance. Keep your voice low if you’re still nearby. Follow instructions from the dispatcher.

Choose escape routes wisely. Side doors or back exits are best. Avoid wide open spaces that leave you exposed. The shooter often targets these areas first.

When Running’s Not Possible, Barricade

Sometimes the shooter may be positioned between you and the only exits, making running impossible. Your next best option is to barricade yourself in a secure room.

Immediately lock and block the door with heavy objects like furniture or equipment. Turn off any source of noise like phones, radios or televisions.

Hide behind solid objects like a concrete wall or thick desk away from the door. Avoid bathrooms or rooms you can get cornered in.

Do not open the door for anyone unless police confirm their presence. Listen for them sliding a badge under the door or providing commands.

Fight As an Absolute Last Resort

Ideally, you’ll be able to either escape or barricade yourself in a secure area. But in a worst case scenario, fighting the shooter may be your only chance of survival.

This should only be attempted when completely cornered with no chance of escape. Commit fully to extreme violence. Yell, throw objects at the shooter’s head, or use physical aggression.

In a coordinated group, you may be able to swarm the shooter while they are reloading. Going after them alone is incredibly risky. Only fight when you’re out of all other options.

What To Do When Law Enforcement Arrives

Once law enforcement arrives, closely follow these specific steps to help them neutralize the threat:

  • Obey all commands immediately without question or hesitation. This may include putting hands up, dropping items, or laying down.
  • Be prepared for tear gas or pepper spray intended to disorient the shooter. Avoid inhaling it.
  • Make no sudden moves and keep hands visible at all times. You don’t want to be mistaken for the shooter.
  • Point out the shooter’s location if known and any victims needing urgent medical assistance.
  • Remain on scene until receiving explicit instructions to leave. The area is still extremely dangerous.
  • Honestly answer any questions officers ask you like descriptions of the shooter.
  • Carefully follow exit orders with hands raised. Watch for potential explosives.

Final Thoughts

We can’t predict when an average day might turn into someone’s worst nightmare. But mentally rehearsing survival strategies now can override panic and potentially save lives.

Visualize your responses to the scenarios described here. Identify escape routes and safe rooms. Psychologically commit to taking swift action.