Public encouraged to take action in active shooter situations

Public encouraged to take action in active shooter situations
(Source: KLTV Staff)
(Source: KLTV Staff)
(Source: KLTV Staff)
(Source: KLTV Staff)

SMITH COUNTY, TX (KLTV) - After attacks on the Ohio State University campus Monday, safety experts are stressing "Run, Hide Fight" as a way to keep yourself alive in an active shooter situation.

The phrase was tweeted out yesterday by Ohio State Emergency Management.

In an active shooter situation, Sgt. Darrell Coslin said lying down is no longer an option.

"We don't have to be a victim, we don't have to lay there and let this person have their way with our selves and our families," Coslin said.

Coslin trains sworn officers and the general public on how to respond to an active shooter.

He said as the number of mass shootings grows, the response tactics for law enforcement and the public are changing.

Coslin said now they teach the Run, Hide, Fight plan of action. He said the best option is to run if you can do so safely. If running isn't an option, hide or do what Coslin calls "deny access."
This means getting out of view, blocking the entry and silencing your cell phone.

"Instead of freezing or panicking or hiding under a desk praying, you can take an active role and fight for your life," Coslin said.

Fight or defend is the last resort, only when your life is in imminent danger.

"The victims have just laid down, the shooter was able to come in and just randomly shoot whoever he wanted," Coslin said.

If the shooter does enter your area, Coslin said you can pick up any item in the room to use to defend yourself.

"Whether we are going to physically overwhelm him with a certain number of people taking him down. Whether we pick up a weapon and arm ourselves, whether it's with a gun or chair or fire extinguisher," Coslin said.

Coslin said the average response time for active shooter situations in three minutes.

For those licensed to carry, officials said not to seek out the victim and only use the weapon if you encounter the shooter and need to defend yourself.

The Smith County Sheriff's Office offers public active shooter training for free throughout the year at no cost.

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