Active Shooter Statistics
An active shooter is an individual who is engaged in killing, or attempting to kill, people in a confined and populated area. Active shooters typically use firearms and have no pattern or methods to their selection of victims. Active shooter events can happen anywhere and at any time and cause significant damage in a matter of minutes before the incident is resolved. Taking a few steps now can help you react quickly when every second counts.
average incident lasts 12 minutes - 37% last less than 5 minutes
98% of shooters are single shooters
97% of shooters are male
40% commit suicide before being stopped
50 active shooter incidents
resulted in 100 killed - 213 wounded
61 active shooter incidents
resulted in 103 deaths and 140 injuries
perpetrators were mostly male and acted alone
age range of the shooters was from 12 to 67 years old
- Ask about emergency plans already in place in places you and your family frequent, such as work, school, and church.
- What do gunshots sound like? If you hear a gunshot, be prepared to act. You most likely won’t have much time to think what you should do - figure it out beforehand. You’ve got to have a plan and this will give you a head start.
- Learn the "Run, Hide, Fight" cycle of options. See below.
- If you are a gun owner, know your weapon, practice with it, and be responsible with it. Know how to use it if you plan to carry it around with you.
How will you respond?
- Decide now how you will respond if you hear the sound of a gunshot. Condition your mind that you will act immediately.
- Know what that action will be if you are alone, with family, with others around, if you have a gun, or if you don’t.
Be aware of your environment
- Maintain situational awareness. If you see something suspicious, be prepared to say something to an appropriate authority.
- Get into the habit of doing this everywhere you go: identify the two nearest exits and map out places to hide (i.e. behind solid doors with locks, under desks, or behind heavy furniture such as large filing cabinets, etc.).
Learn Skills to Help Other
Take FEMA’s You Are the Help Until Help Arrives course. Here you will learn the 5 steps you can provide until help arrives. It includes online video training and instructor materials. It can be found here.
Take Red Cross training. They offer a course called First Aid for Severe Trauma (FAST). In this course participants are trained to handle severe bleeding emergencies and are required to practice using both direct pressure and a tourniquet.
- Having an Active Shooter Kit stored in your car can provide you with helpful tools and materials discussed in training.
hook knife: cut clothes off with this and look for wounds
quick clot: chemical that causes blood to clot faster.
tourniquet: stops blood flow
gauze: when tourniquet won’t work for wounds in shoulders, neck, or hip, etc.
chest seal: seals the wound so the lungs won’t collapse.
Getting away from the shooter or shooters is the top priority.
- Before you run, know the exits.
- Leave your belongings behind.
- Run away in a zigzag pattern, as it’s much harder to hit a moving target.
- Help others escape, but go even if they decide not to (some people freeze).
- Warn others from entering the area you just left.
- Call 911 when you are safe – don’t’ assume others have called. Be ready to describe the shooter, the location, and the weapons used.
This is your best option when running away safely is not possible.
- Find a place to hide.
- Get out of the shooter’s view and stay quiet, silencing all electronic devices including vibrate.
- Lock and block doors, close blinds, and turn off lights.
- Put a solid barrier between yourself and the threat when possible.
- Do not hide in groups—spread out along walls or hide separately to make it more difficult for the shooter.
- Try texting police, using social media, calling 911, and allowing the operator to hear the chaos in the background if it’s too dangerous to speak, or putting an SOS sign in the window.
- Stay in place until law enforcement gives you notice that all immediate danger is clear.
Fight only as a last resort when you can run or cover. Your last resort is to defend yourself.
- Attempt to disrupt the attack or disable the attacker.
- Be totally committed to your actions and be as aggressive as possible.
- If you use a gun to fight understand you are bringing a gun to a fight. Focus so you don’t accidentally shoot someone other than the intended target.
- If you don’t have a weapon, grab a makeshift weapon: a chair, fire extinguisher, scissors, books, etc., Use your hands if you have nothing else.
- Be prepared to cause severe or lethal injury to the shooter.
- Work as a team where possible.
Help Yourself and the Wounded
- Call 911 when it’s safe for you to do so.
- Take care of yourself first. Assess the situation. Decide whether to stay and help, grab the injured and get to safety, or get yourself to safety.
- Take care of yourself first and then, if you are able, help the wounded get to safety and provide immediate care.
- Stop the bleeding: Apply steady, firm pressure on the source of bleeding until first responders arrive. If you can't control the bleeding with manual pressure, consider a tourniquet.
- Position the injured: Lay the injured on their side, legs slightly bent, with bottom hand reached outward and head resting near hand. Raise the chin forward with mouth pointed downward.
- Provide comfort: Share names and ask basic questions. Tell them what you know happened, but do not speculate. Keep them warm and offer a hand to hold.
Help Law Enforcement
- Keep hands visible and empty. This is to ensure you are not viewed as a threat.
- Know that law enforcement’s first task is to end the incident. They may have to pass injured persons along the way.
- Follow law enforcement’s instructions and evacuate in the direction they tell you to.
- Account for all individuals at a designated area. This will help determine who, if anyone, is missing and potentially injured.
Pay Attention to Mental Health
- Limit your exposure to news as constant exposure about the event can cause more stress and anxiety.
- Consider seeking professional help for you and your family to cope with the long-term effects of trauma.
- Reach out to family members and friends you trust for love and support.
- Resume the activities in life that have always given you strength and meaning.