Active Shooter In Your Face – A Few Thoughts

Several things.  Since an Active Shooter Event explodes – literally – in our faces in the United States about every three months, and workplace violence is becoming an all-too familiar phenomenon, well, heck-fire, I thought it is about time for me to share a few thoughts.


I advocate, as I have advocated for years, that school systems coordinate with their local and state police departments – the force(s) who would likely be the first responders to any Rage Shooting Event – in Stress Inoculation Training (SIT), or Dynamic Simulation Training.  Here, folks, is an opportunity to give your administration, teachers, security, and most importantly, your students, their best chance to prevent a catastrophic shooting event, but, failing that, the optimal chance of surviving it with the least amount of loss of human life.

Why and How?

The greatest loss of life in these events stems from a lack of adhering to the 4-P’s of Safety and Survival:  Prevention, Preparation, Planning, and Practice.  Dynamic Simulation (Realistic Scenarios) Training can encompass each of these crucial components, and, not only that, actually inoculate all participant with exactly the same types of Survival Stress that he/she or they will actually experience in a real-life Active Shooter event, but in a safe training environment where no one dies or even suffers an injury.  This is important, I believe, because, in the first several seconds after the first volley of shots ring out, untrained, or poorly trained victims almost always do several things that prove to be catastrophic:

  1. They quickly and intensely lapse into the 1st stage of Death & Dying:  Denial.  For a mind-numbing 2 to 5 seconds their thought process clings to the belief that what they are seeing or hearing (they are rocketed into Sympathetic Nervous System Activation, which means they are incapable of both seeing and hearing because of Selective Attention) is not what they are seeing and hearing, or, more likely that, this is just a drill or a joke of some kind.  Either way, if they don’t quick snap out of it, they are likely dead.
  2. They freeze and hold their breath. 
  3. They panic and run in circles.

The type of realistic scenario training I suggest, however, will put these potential victims through drills designed to energize students, teachers, et al into immediate action.  Action that they have already gone through in training.

Think of it.  Here is the thought process of death.  “What the hell is happening.  He is shooting and I am doomed!”

And here is the thought process of a student who has been through SIT (Dynamic Simulation/Stress Inoculation) Training, a student who has already visualized what he/she would do in this scenario; has been trained to breathe tactically; and now can make a choice between “Run, Hide and/or Fight.”

“This is as bad as it comes,  but I am ready for it.  I know what to do…”

Next Post – Run, Hide, or Fight.  Until then,

Stay Safe,

The Hammer


Don't miss another post -- subscribe by email or RSS today!

Comments are closed.