Security Technology Executive

FEB-MAR 2018

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www. • Februar y/March 2018 • SECURIT Y TECHNOLOGY E XECUTIVE 29 Meanwhile, the nature of the activity is growing increasingly violent and fatal. In the workplace, offenders using guns cause 80 percent of violent deaths. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has now moved to giving such occurrences a category called the "active shooter." The DHS defines this as an individual who is engaged in killing or attempting to kill people in a confined and populated area. In most cases, active shooters use firearms and there is no pattern or method to their selection of victims. Forty-four percent of all active shooter or violent attacker situations in the United States happen at places of business. Despite this alarming number, it is often a subject that is overlooked or ignored. The attack itself rarely lasts more than three-to-five min- utes, and often victims are selected at random. The speed and unpredictability of these attacks can add to the lack of preparation employers do to ensure the safety of all their employees. But it is wrong to think that means nothing can, or should, be done to prepare for such an event. Companies can start by creating an Emergency Action Plan (EAP) that provides employee safety training and procedures. However, while most orga- nizations will have an EAP, outlining the company procedures and policies in place for hurricanes and other natural disasters, rarely will these plans cover or include any reference to act of workplace vio- lence. If you are in the minority and do not already possess an EAP, it is vital you establish one now and ensure the plan covers all disaster scenarios – both natural and human-made. Both the DHS and Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) offer a large selec- tion of resources around the planning of your EAP for workplace violence. There is also myriad securi- ty experts and others providing advice and training. 45 % of all active shooter or violent attacker situations in the United States happen at places of business. The more you know about the potential of an attack, the more you can ensure the safety of your employees How to create an Emergency Action Plan (EAP) that covers workplace violence Employee safety must be a com- pany's highest priority. Therefore, it is imperative you design the EAP around the three tiers of response: Escape, Hide, and Neutralize. # 1 Escape The goal is that every person gets away unharmed which is why escape is the first goal. Guidelines must be drawn to illustrate the best escape route possible. As each per- son escapes, they must do so with- out stopping. Once they have evacu - ated the building, there should be a prearranged rallying point at which a designated supervisor then com- pletes a roll-call once the situation is under control. In this pillar your plan needs to include: • Warnings about not stopping at your desk to collect personal items • Information regarding where to convene – make sure this place offers cover/concealment • Name/title of the individual appointed to call 911 with all relevant information about the attacker – descrip- tion of individual, weapons and last known location # 2 Hide If individuals are not able to escape, hiding is the next recommended course of action. Here are recommendations on how to hide: • Silence all cell phones • Turn off lights • Don't huddle in a group or large numbers • Get low to the ground • Place something , for example, a metal filing cabinet, in front of the door/entrance • Look for a place that offers both cover and concealment # 3 Neutralize If individuals are unavailable to hide or escape, the only recourse left is to attempt to fight back and overpower the assailant.

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