shooter training. It sounds scary but it’s our new reality.
around the country now seek this type of emergency preparedness training in
order to help employees learn what to do, should they ever be in the situation.
owner and instructor of States Tactical Solutions, visited the Better Business Bureau
office in Boise to train our staff on what to do if such an unfortunate event
were to occur. He made it clear, this wasn’t to scare us, but to prepare us. And
prepare us, he did. We all walked out of the training with our guards up and
our brains thinking.
takeaways that I’ve already put into action since the training are:
Be alert. When you’re in a public place,
particularly a crowded area, keep your head up and look around. We are all
guilty of diving deep into our phones to avoid eye contact with strangers, but
this is an absolute no-no. Know what’s happening in your surroundings.
calm. This is a
tough one, especially in moments of chaos. But as States explained, when you
start to panic your heart rate goes up and the higher it goes the less likely
you are to think and act effectively. The best way to do this? Breathe in for a
four-count, hold it for two, breathe out for a four-count, hold it for two.
tools. Wasp spray
makes a good weapon, when needed. It has a spray range of 20-30 feet and is
effective when sprayed in the face. Jon also showed us a writing pen that had a
glass-breaking point on the other end of it. Both tools are low cost,
inconspicuous and nice to have on-hand.
As for the
nitty, gritty of the training, what to do if an active shooter were to arrive
on scene? We were taught the ADD method:
- Avoid: Find
your closest exit and move away from the shooter as quickly as possible. This
may mean breaking a window. This may mean taking a chair and throwing it
through the window. This may mean that if you’re on the second floor, making
the jump may be the route to take. You don’t want to stay put like a sitting
- Deny: If you
can’t make an escape, your next option is to deny the shooter access to your
area. This means finding a room, locking the door and creating as many barriers
as possible. Turn off the light and be silent. Do not open the door for anyone.
- Defend: If you
make it to step three and come face to face with the shooter, it’s survival
mode. Look at your surroundings, what can be a weapon? A fire extinguisher is a
two-point weapon: first spray it at the face of the shooter, then throw the
empty, metal canister at the shooter. Restrain the perpetrator until help
Another important tip: Call 9-1-1 every step of the way, when
it’s safe to do so.