A video developed by the Houston Mayor's Office and the Department of Homeland Security shows three steps you should take if an active shooter enters your workplace or school. WARNING: The video is, at times, graphic.
The video has been used as an educational tool nationwide. Now, several Richmond-area institutions are using the video as well. The message is: if you're confronted by a shooter either run, hide or fight.
The Virginia Department of Public Safety put the video on its website. Marla Graff Decker is the Secretary of Public Safety. She says, she chose to use the video as a tool for preparedness.
"We're happily showing it as one more thing for folks to look at to better prepare themselves," said Secretary Decker.
Chesterfield resident Samantha McGraw is one person benefiting from the video. She took a class with TAC Solutions, a Richmond-based self-defense and concealed weapons education group. She and her classmates watched the video in that class.
"I think it's sad that our society has come to this," McGraw said. "But I'd rather be safe than sorry."
The video says in an active shooter situation the first thing is to run if you can. If you can't run, hide in a place out of the shooter's view, barricade the door, turn out the lights, silence your cell phone and remain quiet.
Or, as a last resort, fight the shooter to disarm him.
J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College is also using the video as part of its emergency operations plan. However, watching the video alone isn't enough.
"You need to practice the skills so they're engrained in you," said McGraw.
So if you're ever in that situation you won't freeze, you'll run, hide or fight.
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