This page describes what to do in an active shooter event. Remember during an active shooting to RUN. HIDE. FIGHT.
- Sign up for an active shooter training.
- If you see something, say something to the authorities right away.
- Sign up to receive local emergency alerts and register your contact information with any work-sponsored alert system.
- Be aware of your environment and any possible dangers.
Make a Plan
- Make a plan with your family and make sure everyone knows what to do if confronted with an active shooter.
- Wherever you go look for the two nearest exits, have an escape path in mind and identify places you could hide if necessary.
- Understand the plans for individuals with disabilities or other access and functional needs.
- Getting away from the shooter or shooters is the top priority.
- Leave your belongings behind and get away.
- Help others escape, if possible, but evacuate regardless of whether others agree to follow.
- Warn and prevent individuals from entering an area where the active shooter may be.
- Call 9-1-1 when you are safe and describe the shooter, location and weapons.
HIDE if escape is not possible.
- Get out of the shooter’s view and stay very quiet.
- Silence all electronic devices and make sure they won’t vibrate.
- Lock and block doors, close blinds and turn off lights.
- Don’t hide in groups. Spread out along walls or hide separately to make it more difficult for the shooter.
- Try to communicate with police silently. Use text message or social media to tag your location or put a sign in a window.
- Stay in place until law enforcement gives you the all clear.
- Your hiding place should be out of the shooter's view and provide protection if shots are fired in your direction.
FIGHT as an absolute last resort.
- Commit to your actions and act as aggressively as possible against the shooter.
- Recruit others to ambush the shooter with makeshift weapons like chairs, fire extinguishers, scissors, books, etc.
- Be prepared to cause severe or lethal injury to the shooter.
- Throw items and improvise weapons to distract and disarm the shooter.
- Keep hands visible and empty.
- Know that law enforcement’s first task is to end the incident and they may have to pass injured along the way.
- Officers may be armed with rifles, shotguns or handguns and may use pepper spray or tear gas to control the situation.
- Officers will shout commands and may push individuals to the ground for their safety.
- Follow law enforcement instructions and evacuate in the direction they come from unless otherwise instructed.
- Take care of yourself first, and then you may be able to help the wounded before first responders arrive.
- If the injured are in immediate danger, help get them to safety.
- While you wait for first responders to arrive, provide first aid. Apply direct pressure to wounded areas and use tourniquets if you have been trained to do so.
- Turn wounded people onto their sides if they are unconscious and keep them warm.
- Consider seeking professional help for you and your family to cope with the long-term effects of the trauma.
- RUN. HIDE. FIGHT.® Surviving an Active Shooter Event - English (Video)
- Active Shooter Information Sheet (PDF)
- Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Active Shooter Preparedness Resources
- Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Active Shooter Preparedness Resources Translated
- Conducting Security Assessments: A Guide for Schools and Houses of Worship Webinar