Health & Safety

April 12, 2012

Disaster preparedness can save lives

By Lt. Col. Ana Ramirez

Disasters can occur in just a few seconds. Preparedness lessens the impact on families, workplaces, and communities. On Thursday, April 19, 2012 Weed Army Community Hospital and the Mary E. Walker Clinic will be conducting a disaster exercise based on an Active Shooter scenario.  The event will take place from 1300 to 1700 hours. There may be an increase in the number of emergency vehicles in the vicinity of the Post Theater, the Sandy Basin, the Blue Track, the SPC Javier Villanueva Troop Medical Clinic, and surrounding areas during this training exercise. The Emergency Room and Pharmacy will be open, but there will be no non-urgent appointments scheduled during this timeframe. We at WACH are continuously preparing for any disaster in order to provide you and your loved ones immediate and safe care during any situation. Thank you for your patience and understanding during this time. Below is guidance to help inform and prepare you in the event of an active shooter.

An active shooter is identified as an individual who is actively engaged in killing or attempting to kill people in a confined and populated area. In most cases, active shooters use firearm(s) and display no pattern or method for selection of their victims. Active shooter situations are unpredictable and evolve quickly. Because active shooter situations are often over within 10 to 15 minutes, before law enforcement arrives on the scene, individuals must be prepared both mentally and physically to deal with an active shooter situation.

 

Good practices for coping with an active shooter situation:

  • Be aware of your environment and any possible dangers
  • Take note of the two nearest exits in any facility you visit
  • If you are in an office or hospital room, stay there and secure the door
  • If you are in a hallway, get into a room and secure the door
  • As a last resort, attempt to take the active shooter down. When the shooter is at close range and you cannot flee, your chance of survival is much greater if you try to incapacitate him/her.

CALL 911 WHEN IT IS SAFE TO DO SO!

 

Information to provide to law enforcement or 911 operator

  • Location of the active shooter
  • Number of shooters, if more than one
  • Physical description of shooter/s
  • Number and type of weapons held by the shooter/s
  • Number of potential victims at the location

 

How to react when law enforcement arrives:

  • Remain calm, and follow officers’ instructions
  • Put down any items in your hands (such as bags or jackets)
  • Immediately raise your hands and spread your fingers
  • Keep hands visible at all times
  • Avoid making quick movements toward officers such as attempting to hold on to them for safety
  • Avoid pointing, screaming, and/or yelling
  • Do not stop to ask officers for help or directions when evacuating, just proceed in the direction from which officers are entering the premises

 

These safety tips and guidelines are not all inclusive, but if understood and implemented, they can increase your chances of surviving an active shooter incident.




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