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According to studies in the U.S., where do most active attacker incidents happen?
According to the FBI's 2014 study, over 45% of active shooter incidents from 2000-2013 took place in a place of commerce (businesses open or closed to the public). 24% of incidents took place at a place of education. Government property came in at 10% and houses of worship were nearly 4% of all incidents.
The average duration of an active shooter incident at a school is 12.5 minutes. How long is the average police response time?
According to the FBI study, 69% of active attacker incidents were over in less than 5 minutes. Among those events, over half were over in 2 minutes or less. School shootings specifically have a longer average duration of 12.5 minutes, but police still took 18 minutes to respond and enter the school. In all active shooter events, 60% were over by the time police arrived. This means the survival of victims really does depend on the actions they take in those few minutes.
In the U.S., the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) promotes the Run, Hide, Fight campaign to combat active attackers. What is the United Kingdom's own campaign called?
The UK replicated much of their 2017 active attacker response campaign after FEMA's model, but they changed the 'Fight' component to 'Tell' as they stress that hiding and telling police is better than confronting the attacker. Part of their campaign is also focused encouraging young people to not stay around to take video and photos of the event on their phones.
40% of mass shooters did this before their murders...
While many active attackers do leave clues as to their motives in a letter or suicide note, many more of them make verbal or written threats that are never reported to officials or are never acted upon with preventative measures.
When using a public address speaker system or texting alert, what is the primary reason school or business administrators should typically avoid giving orders for people to hide, run, or barricade in their rooms during an active attacker event that has just begun?
An effective video camera surveillance system can assist administrators in using a PA or texting alert system to provide updates as to the attacker's general location. The very nature of the speed at which such incidents evolve however, makes it very difficult to disseminate precise information. Many factors can change the usefulness of such information as well. Are there multiple attackers, limited video coverage, and facilities were victims are spread over wide areas? For example, people told to hide in their room may be in greater danger if they can't secure the entry, but they happen to be right next to an exit where they can run outside to safety instead.
Which of the following is NOT a real recommendation for combating active attackers that has been tried or suggested by experts?
All of these answers have at one time or another been proposed and implemented as techniques to increase survival, except for attempting to engage the attacker in conversation. Interestingly, the technique is suggested as a prevention strategy in some sexual assault scenarios, but active attacker events are very different. Victims describe witnessing the active attacker perpetrators in a "zone" or "thousand-yard stare" as they commit their killings. No studies have indicated that negotiation is a useful strategy at this point and any time spent in conversation could be used in running, hiding, or fighting.
A level II rated bulletproof Kevlar panel in a backpack or accessory can stop a 9mm handgun round. All of the following materials can also be expected to stop similar threats EXCEPT:
All of these materials can reasonably be expected to stop a 9mm bullet fired from a handgun, except for a wall composed of drywall. It takes up to 6 or more layers of sheetrock (depending on the type of ammunition used) to stop a 9mm round. Ballistic panels are fairly inexpensive to put in a backpack, briefcase, or even a chair cushion. A level IIIA panel will stop up to a .44 magnum handgun and virtually every shotgun blast and it weighs the same as a can of soda. If you don't have a panel however, you can stuff your shirt or pile on top of you items such as reams of paper, thick books like encyclopedias, or a few metal serving trays.
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“Being that we work in an area that has the potential to be volatile, learning to be aware of your surroundings by being able to identify body language, talking about strategies PRIOR to an incident occurring and learning hands-on self-defensive tactics has not only made me feel empowered, but has prompted me to engage in conversations with colleagues, friends and family on various plans in those ‘what if’ situations.”
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Active Violence in the News
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