An Active Shooter is a person who is using a firearm or other weapon with the intent to injure or kill others. Law enforcement will deploy to the location of the active shooter with the primary goal of stopping the shooter.
An active shooter incident can occur under a variety of circumstances, so no one set of guidelines is able to cover specific actions to take in every situation. An individual must use his/her own discretion during an Active Shooter event as to whether he/she chooses to move to safety (RUN), remain in place (HIDE), or confront the shooter (FIGHT). The emergency text message notification will provide the last known location of the threat but the shooter might have moved. In most cases the best action is to barricade (HIDE) in response to an Active Shooter alert. You should evacuate (RUN) only if you are reasonably sure you know where the shooter is and you have a clear path to an exit. The following are options for response. Remember, “Run, Hide, Fight” is not a progression of events - - the items are not numbered. You take the action you need to survive, and you may go from one action to another.
- If you are outside a building near the threat, go to the nearest cover immediately.
- If you are inside the building and you are confident you know the shooter’s location and have a clear path to an exit, evacuate immediately, and take others with you if possible.
- If you are inside the building with the shooter and you are unsure you can safely exit the building, or if you are in an adjacent building, the safest option is normally to barricade (i.e., Shelter in Place):
- Move to a room that can be locked or barricaded
- Lock and barricade all doors and windows
- Turn off lights, close blinds, and turn off radios or other devices that emit sound
- Keep yourself out of sight (take cover/protection by using concrete walls or filing cabinets)
- Silence cell phones
- If feasible, call 911 and report:
- Where you are located, including building name, floor and room number
- What is happening. If you were able to see the offender(s), give description of the person(s) sex, race, clothing, type of weapon(s), location last observed, direction of travel, and identity – if known
- Number of people at your specific location
- Injuries, if any, including the number of injured and types of injuries
- Your name and other information as requested
- Remain barricaded until a uniformed police officer or a University official identifies themselves by name or position and provides an “all clear.”
- Unfamiliar voices may be an Active Shooter trying to lure you from safety; do not respond to voice commands until you can verify with certainty that they are being issued by a police officer or university official.
- As a last resort and only if your life is in danger:
- Work as a group if possible
- Improvise weapons
- Attempt to incapacitate the shooter
- Commit to your actions
- Act with physical aggression.
What to expect from responding police officers:
- Police officers responding to the Active Shooter are trained to proceed immediately to the area in which shots were last heard; their purpose is to stop the shooting as quickly as possible.
- The first responding officers will likely be from LSUHSC Police and/or New Orleans Police Department, and will normally be in teams of two or four. They may be dressed in regular patrol uniforms, or they may be wearing external bulletproof vests, Kevlar helmets, and other tactical equipment.
- The first officers to arrive will not stop to aid injured people; rescue teams composed of other officers and emergency medical personnel will follow the first officers into secured areas to treat and remove injured persons.
- Responding officers may be armed with rifles, shotguns, or handguns, and might be using pepper spray or tear gas to control the situation. Regardless of how they appear, remain calm and do as the officers tell you. Put down any bags or packages you may be carrying and keep your hands visible at all times.
- Responding officers may point firearms at you while seeking the threat. This is a normal part of their training and response. Avoid any sudden movement and obey all officer commands. Keep your hands visible at all times. Note that the LSUHSC-NO campus and the surrounding area extending 1000 feet from the campus boundaries is a firearm-free zone in accordance with the Louisiana Criminal Code R. S. 14:95. Therefore, anyone on campus or within that area exhibiting a firearm or other dangerous weapon will be considered a threat by law enforcement officers and will be treated as such.