No one wants to imagine a world where they need active shooter training, but it is always best to be prepared should you ever need it. In Tampa, Clearwater, and St. Petersburg, we benefit from living in a colorful community that thrives on tourism, culture and the arts, and enjoying life on the coast. However, the Tampa Bay area is a large area that contains many individuals, and you never know who you may come across during your daily routine. Violent people are notorious for blending in and appearing like “normal” citizens, so there is no surefire way to identify them based on looks alone. If you are ever in the unfortunate situation where a mass attack is occurring in a public space, you need to be prepared. Even a short lesson can prepare you not only to protect yourself but to assist others and lessen the panic.
What is Active Shooter Training?
Active shooter training is used to prepare individuals for “an individual actively engaged in killing or attempting to kill people in a confined and populated area; in most cases, active shooters use firearms(s) and there is no pattern or method to their selection of victims.” This definition, from the Department of Homeland Security, specifies the who, what, where, when, and how of active shootings. DHS also outlines three basic courses of action one should take should they find themselves in this situation.
Evacuate. The first thing you should do is try to remove yourself from the situation. Look for any exits, like windows or doors, and get out as fast as possible while keeping a calm demeanor. Panic will only escalate the trauma of the situation.
Hide. If you can’t locate an exit or it is somehow obstructed, you need to hide. In our training, you will learn how to use your surroundings to create a hiding spot that will protect you and others around you from open fire. While you’re hiding, be sure to remain as silent as possible.
Act. As soon as you are able to, call 911 or law enforcement. If you can’t talk because you are in the vicinity of a shooter, leave the line open so that an operator can listen and locate where the situation is occurring. You should only try interact with the gunman as a last resort and if your life is in imminent danger.
During active shooter training, you will learn about the motivations, mind set, and typical actions of past gunmen. This can help you identify the safest plan of action. We will also discuss what to do when law enforcement arrives on the scene, as civilian actions can make a significant difference in the outcome of an attack. Always respect the officers and follow their instructions, as they’ve had sufficient training and practice with these kinds of situations.
Who Needs Active Shooter Training?
You may be thinking, “Clearwater, Tampa, and St. Pete are all very safe. Why do I need active shooter training?” The truth is, violence can happen anywhere, and instead of hoping that it doesn’t happen, it’s best to arm yourself with the best defense: knowledge. Mass attacks can (and have) happened in places such as:
- Shopping malls
- Movie theaters
- Schools and university campuses
- Governmental buildings
- Theme parks
Anyone from school teachers to mall employees in Clearwater, St. Pete, and Tampa should seek active shooter training in order to stay safe in public areas. Employees that are prepared for these attacks can help reduce injuries and even deaths.
FORTIS IEP’s Thorough Active Shooter Training
With the help of the professionals at FORTIS IEP, you can learn how to protect yourself in an active shooter situation in order to increase the odds of a favorable outcome. These situations can pop up anywhere at anytime, and although no one wants to think that it could happen to you, it can. Recent news has made it clear that this is not a problem that is going away, so it’s best to arm yourself with the strongest weapon: knowledge. Brains can outwit brawn, and with active shooter training, you can even save lives. For interactive protection lessons in Tampa, Clearwater, and St. Petersburg, contact FORTIS IEP today.