What to Do in an Active Shooter Situation

My wife thinks I’m a little nuts, but we’re still happily married after 37 years. Anytime we would enter a restaurant, I always wanted to face the door. Sometimes I would point out some suspicious looking person or couple in a store.

Situational awareness is always something I’ve practiced. I’ve done it since elementary school. Maybe it was the athletic side of my nature. It’s a form of competition. I don’t like to lose.

Situational awareness is not just about a potential terrorist attack. It can apply to any situation that is outside the norm.

I only had to practice it once.

Today, situational awareness is becoming a necessary learned skill. What would you have done in the San Bernardino shooting situation? It’s something to think about. Carrying a gun and knowing how to use it is a first step in having some advantage when things going terribly wrong.

The city where I live, Marietta, Georgia, is holding seminars on the topic:

“As fears over workplace violence has increased, so has the demand from companies for training on what to do during a mass shooting. The city of Marietta is listening.

“On Thursday, the city held active shooter seminars. These seminars were planned before [the] attack in California. Officials say mass shootings can happen anywhere — and they’re happening more often — and people want to know what to if an active shooter shows up on the job.”

The police may only be a phone call away, but most active shooting scenarios are over in minutes, long before the police can arrive.

YOU must be prepared.

The following is from the great website The Art of Manliness: “What to Do in an Active Shooter Situation.”


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It’s a sad fact of life in the 21st century that active shootings have become a regular occurrence in the United States. In other parts of the world, terrorist groups are using active shootings to, well, terrorize. While the media focuses on the firestorm of political debate these events cyclically create, I’ve rarely seen them discuss what people are actually supposed to do in these situations.

According to the FBI, active shootings in public places are becoming increasingly common. Which means it would serve everyone to understand how to respond if they ever find themselves in the line of fire.

Over the years I’ve talked to a lot of military, tactical, and law enforcement professionals who’ve spent their careers training and dealing with violent individuals: U.S. marshals, SWAT officers, and special forces operators. And I’ve asked them all this same question: What’s an average joe civilian like me supposed to do when faced with a gunman who’s indiscriminately firing on people?

They’ve all answered the same way.

In today’s article, I share expert-backed advice on how best to react if you ever find yourself in a situation with an active shooter. Learning how to survive a shooting is much like learning how to survive an airplane crash: such an event is statistically unlikely to happen to you, and simple chance may make you a victim before you’re able to take any volitional action. But if there are things you can do to increase your odds of survival even slightly, you ought to know and practice them.

Something to Keep in Mind: You’re Probably On Your Own

In a study done by the FBI in 2014, it was discovered that most active shootings end in 2 minutes or less. That’s not enough time for law enforcement to arrive. So when you start hearing gunshots in places you shouldn’t be hearing gunshots, understand that you don’t have very much time to think about what you should do.

That’s why…

You’ve Got to Know What You’d Do Before It Actually Happens

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When any sort of emergency situation strikes, be it an active shooter or even a fire, the natural response for most people, surprisingly enough, is not to do anything. We highlighted several of the reasons for this passivity in our article about why most people freeze up in emergency situations. For example, the “normalcy bias” causes victims to act like everything is fine even though things are far from it. Our brain is predisposed to assume that things will carry on in a predictable way. When the pattern is broken, it takes a long time for the brain to process this aberration. This is why many people who witness traumatic events report that it felt surreal, like they were watching a movie and it wasn’t really happening. They also often say that at first they thought the gunshots were fireworks or a car backfiring or a book falling — things that would fit better in their usual paradigm of daily life.

Read the rest of the article here . . . Your life may depend on it.

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