10 November 2009

Active Shooter Protocol

The technique for dealing with mass shootings is called the "active shooter Protocol". This means that the first responder goes towards the sound of the shooting,ignores the dead and wounded, identifies the threat, and neutralises the threat. No verbal commands, no chance for the shooter to surrender. The threat is active and in progress.

Anyone with a firearm who is not reconisable as security service will be considered a target.

The tactic is to move fast and use your firepower. It is the tactic used for dealing with an ambush in combat. Agress the ambushers and use your firepower. That's your best chance to survive.

The problem is that most people confuse plinking and target practise at the range for defensive training. They are not one in the same. Lots of people who know their weapons well don't know shit about defensive shooting tactics, active shooter tactics, or have any real combat shooting experience.

Add in that it takes just minutes for a shooting spree to end

At Virginia Tech, the diminutive, South Korean gunman brandishing a 9mm Glock 19 and a Walther P22 took out his first two victims in the early morning hours. He returned two hours later, chained shut the three main entrances to an educational building and opened fire into second-story classrooms. Thirty others were slain before the gunman turned a weapon on himself.

"The [second] shooting spree took him 9 minutes — 9 minutes to shoot 170 rounds and kill 30 people (ed., I've seen other estimates of 10-12 minutes)," says Tom Turner, director of campus safety at Roanoke College in Salem, Virginia. "The best thing a department can do is send in first responders to try to minimize death and injury, and neutralize the threat."

Likewise, the Fort Hood shootings were over quickly.

The minimum number of officers necessary to effectively utilize the active shooter protocol is three, though Gnagey recommends delaying entry until four officers arrive. A team of four in a diamond-shaped movement pattern — with one point officer, two flankers and a rear guard — permits officers to perform a 360-degree search and protect themselves from all sides. "We expect officers to use their head and evaluate the situation. They can go in by themselves if they have to," DeAndrea adds. "That's not the best way to operate. But if it's taking place in front of you, you don't wait. You go in and save lives."

The contact team treks toward the gunshots if they know where they're coming from. This team must disregard victims; it's only priority is to stop the threat, says DeAndrea. Traditional tactics go by the wayside in that officers move directly toward the threat. "They are marching to the sound of the gun," he says. "When they hear shots fired, that's where they respond to." On their heels, at least in the Arvada PD, is a rescue team, tagged with the responsibility of evacuating survivors and wounded individuals.

The response remains fluid and officers must adapt accordingly, Gnagey emphasizes. If officers arrive on-scene and notice large-caliber bullet holes in cars, buildings or houses, they know the shooter isn't firing a handgun and the superior firepower of a rifle is needed. Likewise, if gunshots cease and the shooter's location remains unknown, then officers slow their advance and begin opening doors and exploring empty rooms. If the gunman begins firing again, the team accelerates and foregoes searching until it reaches the subject.

Their ability to adapt cannot end once the shooter is found, adds Gnagey. For example, if officers discover the suspect in a room full of kids, they must transition to the response tactics prescribed for a hostage-barricade situation and summon SWAT. As the situation shifts to a tactical operation, responding officers must lockdown the room and maintain the perimeter until SWAT gets there. But if the gunman begins firing at hostages, and SWAT has yet to arrive, responding officers need to storm in.

Active Shooter Protocol
Active shooter events are unpredictable, dynamic, rapidly evolving, multi-variable situations requiring rapid response by law enforcement. If this facility experiences an active shooter situation, you should take the following actions:
5. Points to remember:
* There may be more than one (1) shooter
* Do not touch anything in the area, as it is a crime scene
* Prepare a plan of action in advance - predetermine possible escape routes for
yourself, and always know where exits are located
* DO NOT go to a Shelter-in-Place site
* When fleeing, get as far away from the shooting scene as quickly and safely
possible - do not take/carry anything with you
6. Police response and you:
* Police will quickly respond to the area in which shots were last heard and attempt
to immediately engage/contain the active shooter
* First arriving officers will not stop to assist the injured, or evacuate personnel
* Remain calm
* Do exactly as police tell you
* Keep your hands empty and visible at all times
* If you know where the shooter is, quickly tell the officers
* DO NOT get in the way of officers

Got that, Junior Rambos?

Or do you want to get your sorry arses shot? That isn't a bad thing though to have your idiotic arses shot for just being stupid.