The chances of being involved in a real active shooting event is still pretty low despite all the media attention we have seen lately. Have you given thought to how you and your family would handle the situation, how would you react, what standing orders should you have in place to ensure everyone safety?
Failing to Plan
Planning is probably the most important action you can take towards lower your stress level and increasing your survivability. Even if you are not finding yourself being shot at, having a plan to link back up with loved ones is important. We have had to do this on more than one occasion to corral children. Keep it simple; meet at this location at this time. A major mistake is what to do if you do meet there, but your party hasn’t, now what? You need to have a condition, something like wait five minutes then move to this location. There are a lot of reasons why someone might not have been able to make it to the rally point, having to cross a major danger area such as the attack site might not be a good idea. So, if they or you are not there by a certain time, then you fall back to your next location. Trying to move closer to your escape with every rally point is the object here. The time limits give you and the rest of the people the opportunity to link up during a fluid and chaotic situation. It doesn’t hurt to even rehearse this plan at like the mall or school event, just make sure everyone knows its a drill.
Are You In Their Sights
Next would be determining if you are the subject of the active shooting, in the crossfire or in the general area. If you are the subject then it would seem pretty common sense what you need to do, return accurate fire to neutralize the threat then initiate your link up plan to get a full headcount of your family and loved ones. Once that is completed, medical aide would be the next thing that comes to mind, but is it safe to do so? Error on the side of caution by at least getting your family to permanent safety. Something that will more than likely require getting them off site.
Find Cover Now
If you are in the crossfire, look for cover preferably or concealment at least. Try to obscure your presence. Remember your primary objective is the safety of your family. If they are not in imminent threat your first action should be getting them off the attack site. That can be problematic if you are in the crossfire so use the best judgment based off the situation. Sometimes, stopping the threat even if you are not the target is a good idea. It’s one way to ensure your family gets to safety.
Move, then keep moving
If you are in the general area, try to keep something between you and the danger. Avoid moving into the crossfire. Movement should sever a tactical purpose. You are either moving to cover or moving to an exit. When you do move consider moving in smaller chunks, from one piece of cover to the next. Almost in a bounding over watch type manner. Once you can start to put some distance between you and the threat keep moving. You reach a point, where you have created enough dead space and now you can just double time to safety.
You cannot afford to bury your head or look to the government to protect you and your family. You need to take action yourself and the first action should be coming up with a descent plan.