TTAG reader Cliff H. was not impressed with The Washington Post’s advice for dealing with an active shooter at work. So he knocked out this little cheat sheet, of which I’ll share with you. It assumes you, our Armed Intelligentsia, are armed. What are the odds?
1. Move to COVER. Move as fast as you can away from the threat’s line of sight. In almost every case the Active Shooter has not trained with firearms in real life scenarios and so hits a moving target only a small percentage of the time at any range. Once you have found cover expose only enough of your head and body on your strong side to get a good sight picture before firing. ALWAYS remember the four rules, but also remember this is a life or death emergency situation and the Active Shooter’s death at the earliest possible time is the desired outcome . . .
2. Look for an exit. Look for any exit to get people out of the line of fire, including emergency exits, windows and doors not typically used as entry and exit points. Make sure you know that doors not typically used as entry/ext points actually lead exterior, not to a closet or other dead-end trap. Direct all people you can see or that can hear you to use those exits while you engage the Active Shooter to cover their retreat. When possible distract the Active Shooter with thrown objects or other noises. Your ammo is limited – conserve it!
3. Take cover, stay low. If there is anything low in the room that can provide cover, duck to that height and stay behind that cover. If you need to maneuver to get a good shot at the Active Shooter scramble on all fours to lower your profile. Remember that a shot taken from low cover at the Active Shooter’s feet, knees or lower legs can be extremely effective.
4. Stay sharp and focused on the threat. Realize the possibility that you can be shot the longer the Active Shooter threat goes un-neutralized and think through how you can best ensure that you shoot and stop the Active Shooter before he can deliver an incapacitating wound to you.
5. Remember – an Active Shooter almost always believes that they are safe within a Gun Free Zone. Your ability and willingness to shoot back effectively will be a shocking surprise. Use the advantage to enact violence and speed of action in your response if at all possible. In any event realize that your presence has completely disrupted his wet dream of unopposed massacre and the advantage is now yours if you keep your head. At the very least your distraction from his plans may allow many more people to escape his planned kill zone.