Security Incidents Involve More Than Just Active Shooters

Active shooter training must expand to counter other vulnerabilities on campus, including the active killer threat.
Published: August 16, 2017

School, university and hospital tragedies have evolved beyond active shooters to include many other threats involving knives, vehicles, fires, explosives and more. It’s critical to include training that anticipates and prepares to address these additional hazards.

Stephen Lopez, Chief of the New Mexico State University Police Department, stresses the importance of preparation before an incident occurs in Before the Shots: Preparing for an Active Killer Incident, a Campus Safety HQ Action Plan.

“When we’re talking about people being able to get out of their normal daily mindset and handle an immediately life-threatening situation, it’s difficult for the brain to make that leap without having some type of preparation that gives them kind of a mental road map to guide them in the correct direction,” Lopez says. “Having some experience, having discussed it, having thought about it helps provide that road map for them.”

In CSHQ’s new action plan, Chief Lopez covers how to:

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  • Look for both primary and secondary hazards
  • Teach others on campus about hazards
  • Integrate active killer incidents into all-hazard emergency plans
  • Prepare staff to appropriately respond to active killer incidents
  • Put into place an exercise and evaluation system to test and improve the plan
  • Prepare the community, staff, students and responders
  • Work a training plan
  • Perform after the killing stops
  • Identify recovery needs

Included are downloads listing primary and secondary hazards, a seven-point checklist of what to do after an event and bonus content where Chief Lopez answers questions from campus safety professionals.

Before the Shots: Preparing for an Active Killer Incident  is just one of the Action Plans on Campus Safety HQ, the community and resource headquarters for campus safety trainers. The site presents easy-to-use, proven training methods developed by some of the top security experts in the country and designed to improve the security of any campus.

The action plans that are currently available include:

  • The First 30 Seconds, 16 real-life school crisis scenarios designed to prepare all staff members to respond to threats and emergencies
  • School Bus and Transportation Crisis Scenario Training
  • Safe Passages: School Transportation Security and Emergency Preparedness, designed to train bus drivers to cope with emergencies.

Other action plans that deal with preparing for threatening situations before they occur include:

  • Campus Active Shooter Tabletop Exercise
  • Active Shooter Course
  • Bomb Threat Protocol for Schools
  • The Five Layers of School Safety

Trying to prevent violent acts before they occur is the focus of Threat Assessments — Preventing Targeted Acts of Violence.

Addressing issues at the university level are Issues, Trends and Challenges for Private College Law Enforcement Agencies.

In addition, you’ll find various safety topics addressed by the speakers at the 2017 Campus Safety Conferences and leadership training developed by Leadercast Now.

New programs are added to Campus Safety HQ each month to meet your training needs.

Find out more at Campus Safety HQ.

Strategy & Planning Series
Strategy & Planning Series
Strategy & Planning Series
Strategy & Planning Series
Strategy & Planning Series