What does B.E.C.O.N. stand for in our Active Shooter Preparedness Program?
Utilize whatever you have available within the room to construct an effective barricade that makes entry into the room either impossible or forces the intruder to negotiate it.
Just like your standard fire drills, if there is a threat in the building, you get OUT of the building. If you know where the threat is located and you have a means to egress, do not let people’s indecisions to egress inhibit you from pressing forward. Help direct them to come with you, but get out of the building quickly. Look for alternate exits and if feasible, you may even be able to egress through a window.
Control remains constant throughout the planning, preparation, event and post-event phases of an emergency situation. When the emergency situation occurs, you may find those who are indecisive and unwilling to respond. This is where you’re training really kicks in, step up and take charge of the situation, be proactive and assist because you have the confidence and the will to do so. Having an effective and retainable training plan for your staff will give you that level of confidence to respond proactively, saving your life and the life of other.
Only as a last resort, it may take an act of aggression to stop the Active Shooter from killing you or others. Becoming the attacker is not expected but may just be the action required to survive a situation. The intruder enters the room and fully expects to dominate the room through fear. Are you going to cower like a sheep, or fight like a lion? It is through reality-based hands-on training that gives you the confidence to respond proactively in such a situation that an online course simply does not provide.
Put out “Real-time” information as quickly as possible. Use a cell phone, handheld radio, public address system or just by yelling. The more information you tell people the more options you give them to respond proactively. What is more informative? “There is a shooter in the building!”, or “There is a shooter at or near the main office, North wing!”. Simply through the information provided or the proximity of shots heard, we can make a collaborative decision to lockdown/barricade or egress. Remember, seconds count!