Workplace violence may be a rare occurrence, but you should never underestimate the importance of being prepared in the event that your workplace is targeted by an active shooter. An active shooter is an individual who is engaged in killing or attempting to kill people in a confined and populated area.
Shootings can happen anytime, anywhere. The general perception is that these events happen in bad areas or in buildings that contain key members of society. However, this is not always the case, and the majority of shootings that occur in the workplace are carried out by employees, or former employees, for reasons associated with their job.
- While you may not be able to prevent an attack from happening, it is critical to keep the following tips in mind in the event that your workplace experiences an active shooter incident:
- Evacuate the premises if possible.
- Call 999 if you can do so safely.
- Warn everyone you encounter to leave the area.
- Remain silent and still if you can’t flee safely. Be sure to silence any devices you may be carrying.
- Block any doors with heavy furniture if you are hiding in a room. Don’t stand near any windows.
- Only fight back as a last resort. Be sure to cooperate with emergency personnel—it can mean the difference between life and death. When police arrives, be sure to react in the following ways:
- Calmly follow instructions.
- Put down any items you are carrying, and keep hands visible at all times.
- Provide as much information as you can.
Attacks can happen without warning. Since they are often finished before police arrives on the scene, it is important to consider the threat of an active shooter in advance and be aware of your company’s emergency procedures.