Chances are, if you are reading this blog, you are aware of the recent spat of active shooter events. I’m also guessing that you are well aware of the realities and politics of new reporting for such events. Putting those aside for a moment, let’s take a few minutes to review and refresh ourselves on the equipment and tactics we need to employ to prevent or respond to such an event.
For preparation, in large scale community events or high-risk areas, make sure to take measures to control access using a variety of means.
A few proven ways to ensure public safety
For pedestrian control, consider metal detector points for all entries. These have become very common place and the general public is no longer offended by their use. Supplement these with judicious "wanding" and you have a very strong mechanism to keep weapons from the building or event. A
Areas that are open to vehicle traffic might consider using vehicle barriers.
These are an excellent means of highly portable vehicle barriers that can be placed and removed easily on the day of an event. They are cost efficient and easy to transport and store.
Also consider a significant stand off distance from any fencing to the event. A solid camera system or drone system can be used to monitor the perimeter and send security to any suspicious activity outside your perimeter.
Individual security personnel might consider using ballistic vests. Ballistic vests are not just adept at stopping gun fire. Many tests have demonstrated that modern ballistic vests can reduce or prevent injuries from edged weapons or stabbing devices. While they are not, and should not, be marketed as such, the value of ballistic vests in this area is real.
For low light events or locations, a quality illumination tool is a must. Actually, two are the proper number. As the old adage goes, “one is none and two is one” meaning a spare light should be available in the event your primary light fails. A good illumination tool can help find avenues of escape or illuminate such avenues for people. The light can obviously be used to locate and identify perpetrators. A strong light can also temporarily blind someone, making target acquisition difficult for them. And of course, a good flashlight will be crucial in assessing and treating injuries.
If you are in the Security business, hopefully you have considered the possibilities of such events. And, if you are working with dedicated professionals, take the next step to get solid professional training in Active Shooter response. Then seek sustainment training on a regular basis. You owe it to the people you are protecting.
About the writer
Military and Law Enforcement Veteran
FBI certified firearm instructor
MP5 and Sub Machine gun instructor
Defensive tactics instructor