In today’s workplace, an act of violence/active shooter event is 18 times more likely than a fire according to the Department of Justice. What?!?! That is startling. What does that mean for me, for my organization? Well, it means that an active shooter situation is now a recognized hazard per OSHA and companies are realizing that they need to have a plan for how to prepare and respond for these types of events.
A good way to incorporate this into your organization is to add it in with life safety education/exercises. Most companies already prepare their employees for events like a fire or weather-related disaster, it makes sense to add active shooter preparedness in that same category.
The Department of Homeland Security advises to teach the Run, Hide, Fight technique (in that order). dhs.gov/sites/activeshooter
- Run – The first goal is to leave the building and get away quickly.
- Hide – If you cannot run, find someplace safe to hide. This could be in a room, under a desk then proceed to lock the door and/or barricade the door.
- Fight – If you cannot run or hide and your life is in imminent danger, then fight. Use whatever you can as a weapon or distraction. Examples include, coffee pot, stapler, chair, etc.
Teaching your staff this technique will equip them in the office, but also in their personal life.
Danielle Caliendo MPA, CBCP
Business Continuity Coordinator, CU*Answers