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Author Topic: Active Shooter training as a safety meeting topic  (Read 9586 times)
Live2Learn
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Posts: 630

« on: December 21, 2015, 10:31:42 PM »

More and more businesses, universities, and schools are doing 'active shooter' training.  Would this be a good safety meeting topic, and maybe even practical exercise?  The link below is an one example of many training videos posted on youtube.
 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pPG8D434FM0

The Washington Post recently published a pretty good article on the topic in response to the San Bernardino terrorist attack.   If all works correctly, I've attached the article to this post.

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Holding Pattern
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« Reply #1 on: December 21, 2015, 10:46:12 PM »

Unfortunately this is a subject that is too polarizing to rationally discuss. I'd be worried about losing members if I did so.

I'd leave this safety brief to those that wish to review the FEMA courses on such along with those that are brought in to gun-free zones to explain what to do.
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Cadetter
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« Reply #2 on: December 21, 2015, 10:51:30 PM »

It's been a safety topic in my squadron and was accepted well.
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Spam
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« Reply #3 on: December 21, 2015, 11:46:29 PM »

My safety officer put on a brief on this topic this month (actually, on the evening of the San Bernadino shooting, by chance).

It was well received by cadets and officers, and was not divisive or polarizing in any way (*I should point out that I have probably five or six major faiths represented in my unit, including muslim cadets), as it was presented in terms of awareness, preparation, and response using federal guidelines and training material.

Note for improvement, one of the findings was that we need to analyze and come up with an evac/escape plan... our existing fire drill plan would not work, and the suggestion to have everyone run to the fenced in area wouldn't fly either (what, am I the ONLY guy in the unit who watches "The Walking Dead")?

V/R
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kirbahashi
Member

Posts: 55

« Reply #4 on: December 22, 2015, 07:50:46 AM »

Unfortunately this is a subject that is too polarizing to rationally discuss.

No offense, the steps you should take in an active shooter are not polarizing.  What will be polarizing is what caused the active shooter in the first place.  As a parent of a CAP cadet I would be thankful their unit is at least thinking about this. 

To your original comment, make yourself familiar with the suggested course of action as given by professionals.  The resources are out there, and I won't turn this thread into a an active shooter response training platform.  There are other experts here who can do that.  If you want further info, PM me.

http://pittsburghpa.gov/ema/active-shooter-info
http://www.dhs.gov/active-shooter-preparedness

I would encourage any unit that meets in a public space, even if entry is controlled (e.g. military base) should plan, discuss, and train to an active shooter situation.  It is unfortunate that we have to think like this, but that is where we are.  I have done this as a squadron commander.  I have used the FEMA video which is pretty good.  Contact local sheriff or police departments and find out if they provide training as they could be a good resource.

Think of it like a fire escape plan.  One of those things you "should" have on file, test once a year, but pray you never have to use.
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Live2Learn
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Posts: 630

« Reply #5 on: December 22, 2015, 07:17:11 PM »

FWIW, a former Squadron Commander lost his wife to an armed attack on an air force base a little over 20 years ago.  The loss of his wife haunts him to this day.  His story, plus the many  events since then in schools, hospitals, theaters, and yes, military bases motivated me to make the initial post on this thread.  Whether perpetrated by a 'lone wolf' or a team of terrorists it seems prudent to think of it ahead of time and be mentally prepared to escape or hide if able, or mount an aggressive defense if you must. 
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Spam
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« Reply #6 on: December 22, 2015, 07:35:04 PM »

I was at NAVAIR in Jefferson Plaza, Crystal City VA (Washington DC) in 1995 when a disgruntled PMA-209 employee rode the elevator up with us, then drew and went off. We went on lockdown. The Navy did a good job taking care of the victims, who all lived.

Very good idea to do this, Live2Learn. This might be one of the best topics to get a "real" NHQ safety brief together on...

V/R,
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A.Member
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« Reply #7 on: December 22, 2015, 07:46:16 PM »

Unfortunately this is a subject that is too polarizing to rationally discuss. I'd be worried about losing members if I did so.

I'd leave this safety brief to those that wish to review the FEMA courses on such along with those that are brought in to gun-free zones to explain what to do.
Huh?!  What exactly is polarizing about it?  It's a real and relevant topic for today; not one to be shied away from.

That said, it's also a topic probably best addressed by actual experts as opposed to the average member that spent the night in a Holiday Inn Express.
« Last Edit: December 22, 2015, 07:49:48 PM by A.Member » Logged
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Holding Pattern
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« Reply #8 on: December 22, 2015, 08:04:00 PM »

Unfortunately this is a subject that is too polarizing to rationally discuss. I'd be worried about losing members if I did so.

I'd leave this safety brief to those that wish to review the FEMA courses on such along with those that are brought in to gun-free zones to explain what to do.
Huh?!  What exactly is polarizing about it?  It's a real and relevant topic for today; not one to be shied away from.

That said, it's also a topic probably best addressed by actual experts as opposed to the average member that spent the night in a Holiday Inn Express.

A combination of things, including finding out if for example the conversation might be a trigger for anyone in the squadron who lived through such an event, those that are of the opinion that forcing people to be disarmed is a good idea, and those that think forcing people to be disarmed is a bad idea.

Or consider that it took us a signficant period of time to update active shooter training to include viable combat strategies as part of said training, and note the response:
https://www.google.com/search?q=run+hide+fight&oq=run+hide+f&aqs=chrome.1.69i57j0l5.3343j0j7&sourceid=chrome&es_sm=93&ie=UTF-8#q=run+hide+fight&tbm=nws

Clearly, I'm the minority opinion on captalk that CAP isn't the best venue for training people on this sort of thing. I'll bow out of this conversation and let you all continue.
« Last Edit: December 22, 2015, 08:07:13 PM by Starfleet Auxiliary » Logged
THRAWN
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« Reply #9 on: December 22, 2015, 08:09:38 PM »

It is taught in schools. Its the new duck and cover. It is much more useful then the tsunami briefing...
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Strup
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Chappie
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« Reply #10 on: December 22, 2015, 08:47:48 PM »

Unfortunately this is a subject that is too polarizing to rationally discuss. I'd be worried about losing members if I did so.

I'd leave this safety brief to those that wish to review the FEMA courses on such along with those that are brought in to gun-free zones to explain what to do.

The 2013 PCR Chaplain Corps Region Staff College included an Active Shooter session conducted by a CDI who was a LEO.   Outstanding session...received high marks from the students in the final evaluation of the CCRSC.
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Live2Learn
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« Reply #11 on: December 23, 2015, 01:40:16 AM »


A combination of things, including finding out if for example the conversation might be a trigger for anyone in the squadron who lived through such an event, those that are of the opinion that forcing people to be disarmed is a good idea, and those that think forcing people to be disarmed is a bad idea.

Or consider that it took us a signficant period of time to update active shooter training to include viable combat strategies as part of said training, and note the response:
https://www.google.com/search?q=run+hide+fight&oq=run+hide+f&aqs=chrome.1.69i57j0l5.3343j0j7&sourceid=chrome&es_sm=93&ie=UTF-8#q=run+hide+fight&tbm=nws


Good points re: potential conversation on viewpoints of defense vs escape, as well as the potential for triggering PTSD from a past event.  That's good stuff to think about.  However, among the objections mentioned in the Google search link was the statement that "some people freeze" when faced with a dangerous, stressful situation.  That is absolutely true.  I question whether the inability of some individuals to processes information and respond appropriately is a sound objection to presenting information on what history and current events tell us is an important topic.  We do not hesitate to discuss winter survival, CPR/AED/1st Aid, boating safety, and other life threatening topics with lay personnel researching and presenting information gleaned from expert sources.  How is this topic fundamentally different? 

Please do not recuse from the discussion.  You have valuable insights to offer.. 
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THRAWN
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« Reply #12 on: December 23, 2015, 07:53:40 AM »

The best way to handle this is to find out what your host facility has in place as far as policy and then request a brief from them or LE. Done. No polarizing topics. Like uniforms....
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Strup
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Flying Pig
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« Reply #13 on: December 23, 2015, 08:24:36 AM »

I used to teach active shooter and Ive done a number of talks with groups about it.  Never with CAP.  As far as it becoming polarizing.... its the instructors fault if it becomes polarizing but then there are times when your audience is pre-disposed to the politics of it.  Allowing politics, discussions about gun control, etc can derail the topic faster than a uniform thread.  Its absolutely imperative that the instructor set out from the beginning that we are here to discuss tactics and responses.  Politics, debating gun control or even debating "Why" these events even occur is not part of the class. 

Honestly, the most difficult group I had to teach were teachers at a high school in the SF Bay Area.  It was like herding cats to get them from interjecting their own "opinions" into how active shooters should be handled and nearly impossible to keep a political question out of EVERYTHING!  There biggest hurdle they could not wrap their minds around was that when cops arrive on scene, they will bypass wounded students and advance towards the threat to stop it, then people will come in behind them and evac/treat the kids/wounded.  But we have to stop the threat first.  Absolutely could not fathom the idea of passing a child.  While their concern for their students was very apparent and commendable they lacked the mindset to process the violent nature of an active shooter.  They were bent on locking down, hiding and even being killed with their students vs allowing kids to run and escape and have a chance.  In one scenario, we had to stop and escort a teacher out who was crying.  The teachers and school district employees were observers and role players along with the schools drama club.   And quite frankly, the scenarios were pretty vanilla.   I had one teacher even comment about how "blood thirsty" the police officers were who were attending the class.  Her thought was the tactic of stopping the threat before treating the wounded was something she could not process.  "You want to kill first and treat wounded after.  I cant accept that as being the right response."   I was amazed at the moral objections a few of them presented to dealing with the active shooter.  They were almost compassionate towards the suspect.  They knew what needed to happen, but they were not wired mentally to understand violence of action. 

So can these discussions become polarizing?  Ohhhhh you bet they can!
« Last Edit: December 23, 2015, 08:36:34 AM by Flying Pig » Logged
Flying Pig
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« Reply #14 on: December 23, 2015, 10:16:36 AM »

Ive told my kids to never let anyone lock you down.  Run and if necessary... fight if you get cornered.  But most importantly, run and evac the area and take people with you.  Studying active shooter incidents, I dont know that any of them involved the shooter chasing people.  Most walked calmly and systematically shooting victims they either trapped or victims they found hiding.  Of course if you get cornered or are actually trapped by the structure then Im not saying hiding isnt a viable option, but it shouldn't be the first option.  Situational awareness and balancing your options is an ever changing dynamic in something like this. 
Ive been in one active shooter incident in my life.  I was on a domestic violence call and the husband was alive inside shooting.  We chose to go on the offensive and enter a bedroom window.  Aggressing the target forced the suspect to make a decision to kill himself as we made our way down the hallway.  Sadly his wife was already dead but his kids were alive standing in the living room.  Nobody knows what his intentions were with his kids.  I like to think that they are alive today because of the decision my partner and I made to advance and put a predator on defense.  Active shooters are cowards in the truest sense of the word and in studying their plans (or lack of) you will find most had no plan to escape.  Evidence shows they had only planned to go as far as they could as fast as they could. When confronted, they ended it themselves.  Not all, but most.  Im in a unique position that I get to carry a gun pretty much everywhere and anywhere I go.  I realize people don't always have that option. 
Anyway.... thats my take on the matter. 
« Last Edit: December 23, 2015, 10:23:10 AM by Flying Pig » Logged
TheSkyHornet
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« Reply #15 on: December 23, 2015, 11:40:15 AM »

Politics, debating gun control or even debating "Why" these events even occur is not part of the class. 

Highly agree.

It's about teaching what to do in that situation, not how to mitigate future occurrences through cultural or political change. When it does happen, you don't have a choice. You're now part of it. Now what do you do? You don't know because someone thought it was a polarizing subject insensitive to cadets.

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Lobo de Plata
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« Reply #16 on: December 23, 2015, 07:41:08 PM »

As an LEO who does active shooter training and as our squadron's safety officer, I think it is a relevant subject for both seniors and cadets but has to be handled very carefully. For example, the current run-hide-fight thinking is ok until you get to the fight part. Fighting in lieu of getting gunned down is logical but it raises questions such as; fight how (technique), fight with what, what about my pocket knife, should I carry a gun, etc. The gun part is probably the most common question. There is also the liability issue of a professional giving advice to a mixed audience. I'll leave that for you to think about.
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Ned
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« Reply #17 on: December 23, 2015, 08:11:16 PM »

There is also the liability issue of a professional giving advice to a mixed audience. I'll leave that for you to think about.

I'm not seeing a significant liability issue.  Professionals give advice to CAP "mixed audiences" all the time.  Firefighters talk to cadets and seniors about fire safety.  Medical people teach First Aid and give advice about heat injury prevention.  LEOs tell cadets not to do drugs.  Chaplains advise cadets to lead moral and upright lives.

And here any sort of training concerning what to do in a literal "life and death" situation that is designed and intended to save lives in extreme situations seems like a "low risk", liability-wise.

Ned Lee
Former Legal Officer

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abdsp51
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« Reply #18 on: December 23, 2015, 10:33:55 PM »

As an LEO who does active shooter training and as our squadron's safety officer, I think it is a relevant subject for both seniors and cadets but has to be handled very carefully. For example, the current run-hide-fight thinking is ok until you get to the fight part. Fighting in lieu of getting gunned down is logical but it raises questions such as; fight how (technique), fight with what, what about my pocket knife, should I carry a gun, etc. The gun part is probably the most common question. There is also the liability issue of a professional giving advice to a mixed audience. I'll leave that for you to think about.

Concur.  I was asked a question after Sandy Hook about whether or not teachers should be armed or not.  My answer was the same as having airline pilots have a gun in the cockpit.  Once you pull it you commit to the action of use.  That in and of itself is something that someone has to prep for and just can't be thrust into it. 

In Az, unless I was on base, at a CAP event or in a location that legally prohibited carry I carried my sidearm everywhere.  It's funny that in the wake of all the active shooters that occur the folks on capitol hill start screaming for more gun control.  IMNHO that if you had more people carrying concealed and doing so legally you can reduce the likely hood of mass casualties.  The incident in Tucson and a few other places across the nation have reflected that casualties would have been higher had a private person legally carrying concealed not acted.

And if you look back at most of the active shooter incidents they have all happened primarily at a gun free zone area.
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PHall
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« Reply #19 on: December 23, 2015, 10:46:54 PM »

And if you look back at most of the active shooter incidents they have all happened primarily at a gun free zone area.

All active shooters are not stupid. Their tactics constantly evolve and so must ours.
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