Active shooting incidents have become more frequent in recent years, and although such tragedies may seem unlikely to affect your organization, shooters frequently target businesses of all sizes. In fact, most active shooting incidents take place in a business setting, according to an FBI report.
Even if your business has comprehensive emergency and evacuation plans, the unique and severe risks associated with shootings call for a custom-built plan to protect your business and employees. Take these steps to prepare your business for an active shooter:
Consider the key differences between an active shooter incident and other emergencies. For example, your business may have dedicated escape routes during a fire, but these routes may not help you during a shooting incident as the location of the attacker changes.
Walk through your business and conduct a security assessment. Take note of how easy it is for employees and pedestrians to access different areas of your business, as well as any secure areas that could offer shelter during a shooting.
Reach out to law enforcement and local officials. Establishing lines of communication before an incident will reduce response times, and providing first responders with details like your business’s floor plans will help them plan ahead.
Educate your employees by regularly notifying them of emergency plans and procedures. You should also conduct an active shooting drill at least once every year.
Consider what will happen after an active shooting incident. You may want to plan for employee counseling, business continuity procedures and insurance policies that can help during the recovery process.