- By: Capt. Monty Ashliman, Commanding Officer NAS Lemoore
- Posted on: February 21, 2014
What is your plan if you hear gunshots in you work space? Run? Hide? Fight? The Navy Yard shooting in Washington, D.C., last year puts active shooter preparedness on the front burner once again. According to the news media coverage, the gunman was a contractor with access to the Navy Yard making him an insider threat to the men and women working at the Navy Yard. According to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), on average, active shooter situations are often over within 10 to 15 minutes.
Before law enforcement arrives on the scene, individuals must be prepared both mentally and physically to deal with an active shooter situation. These situations are unpredictable and evolve quickly, so it is imperative to know your plan ahead of time. During a crisis is not the time to start thinking about your plan. It is also important to exercise your plan periodically to maintain proficiency.
Next week, all U.S. Navy installations will exercise their active shooter plans during the annual exercise SOLID CURTAIN-CITADEL SHIELD 2014 (SC-CS14). SC-CS14 is a Force Protection exercise conducted by Commander, U.S. Fleet Forces Command (USFF) and Commander, Navy Installations Command (CNIC) on all CONUS Navy installations from Feb. 24-28.
SC-CS 14 uses realistic scenarios to ensure U.S. Navy security forces maintain a high level of readiness to respond to changing and dynamic threats. Scenarios can include exercising different threat conditions, which can lead to some traffic delays. No significant delays are anticipated during the week of SC-CS 14 for NAS Lemoore, but base personnel and community members may experience minor traffic back-ups during this time, so please plan accordingly.
The time to develop a plan is now:
- -Identify multiple evacuation routes, and know your assembly areas.
- -Account for any special need requirements.
- -Maintain an accurate personnel roster.
- -Designate hiding rooms / locations, and develop a barricade plan.
- -Consider developing alternate communication signals / codes; however, this is not effective against an insider threat like the Navy Yard shooter.
- -Locate at least two exits when visiting other offices/buildings.
Responding to an Active Shooter Situation: The action you choose is contingent upon the situation near you. Stay calm and do not pull or respond to the fire alarm.
RUN if safe to do so.
HIDE if you are in an office.
- -Lock and barricade the door.
- -Cover the windows, turn off the lights.
- -Silence electronic devices.
- -Remain silent and stay in place.
- -Prepare to fight and look for something to use as a weapon.
TAKE COVER if you are outside.
- -Put something between you and the shooter.
- -If near a vehicle, hide near the vehicle’s engine if possible.
FIGHT if you are in imminent danger.
- -Negotiation is not an option.
- -Disrupt or disable the attacker by any means available.
- -Be aggressive, incapacitate the attacker.
CALL 911 as soon as possible and provide the following information:
- -Location of shooter(s).
- -Number of shooter(s).
- -Physical description of the shooter(s).
- -Number / type of weapons.
- -Use or threat of explosives / improvised explosive devices (IEDs).
- -Whether or not they are still shooting.
Do not pull or respond to fire alarm (unless an official announcement is made).
Be prepared. An Active Shooter situation is fast moving, and law enforcement may not be on scene right away. It is important to remain calm and let your training take over. Know when to run, hide, and fight!
Protecting our Navy installations is extremely important. Safeguarding our Navy personnel, families, veterans, retirees, base visitors, and equipment at home is the first step in mission accomplishment. The ability to safeguard our Naval installations allows us to keep our homeland safe.
All my best,
Capt. Monty Ashliman
Commanding Officer, Naval Air Station Lemoore
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