Our thoughts and prayers go out to the victims’ families and to everyone affected by the tragic shooting that took place in Lafayette, LA, last night.
With this being the second deadly incident inside a gun-free zone this month, we feel it was necessary to provide some insights on how to react during a deadly encounter while unarmed in a gun-free zone. The following are some very basic strategies to improve your chances of surviving a deadly shooting…if you’re ever without your gun.
Use Situational Awareness. It is important to remain constantly vigilant; a heighted sense of awareness will help you identify a threat immediately. Be aware of what’s happening and who’s around you—at all times. Identify entrances and exits as well as things that could provide cover if needed.
Minimize Your Exposure. Once an attack as begun immediately minimize your exposure. Get down and find cover. Cover can be described as any object between you and the shooter that could potentially stop a bullet. DO NOT stand up and look in the direction of the threat. If you’re not prepared, this will be your natural instinct, making you an easy target.
Find An Escape Route: Immediately after you’ve found cover, you must make a plan to move. If you’re discovered crouching and hiding in one spot for too long you will become the next target. Identify an escape route that moves you away from the shooter—from one place of cover to another. If possible, avoid large crowds because the shooter will likely focus on that area.
Find Help. Finally, once you have made it to a place of safety, immediately contact the authorities. Everyone around you will be in a state of panic, so it is important to remain calm and help others who may have been injured. Once the police arrive, do exactly what they say and do your best to provide an accurate account of what happened.
Every time you go out or you are forced to enter a gun-free zone, take a second to review and remember these simple strategies. Consistent practice will eventually turn into habit and will ultimately help prepare you for any situation.