BBCC students learn techniques for surviving shooter attack

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Improving the chances of survival and escape in the event of a shooting attack was the subject of a training session for student tutors at Big Bend Community College. Mass shootings are rare, and it’s very unlikely that one will happen at BBCC, said campus security director Kyle Foreman. But a shooter, when he or she is looking for targets, looks for a place where people don’t know how to react, he said. The training makes the building a less attractive option, a process Foreman called “hardening the target.”

Law enforcement and security officials have learned from various incidents, he said, and one of the first lessons is that the highest number of fatalities came in places where people didn’t react. Victims were most likely to get killed when they froze or tried to hide in an unsecured place, Foreman said.

People should be aware of their surroundings, especially when they’re in a place that might be an attractive target, Foreman said. It doesn’t take more than a few seconds to check the entrances and exits, he said, and look for any objects that could be used to slow down a shooter. The traditional method of security, practiced in elementary and secondary schools, has been to lock the classroom and shelter the kids away from any windows. That’s still an option, Foreman said, but there are others.

“The biggest one and best one is evacuate.” Even in a lockdown situation the people trapped in a room need to look for a way to get out, he said. In order to get time to run, potential victims need to do what they can to make it tougher for the shooter to target them. “You need to try to throw their game off,” Foreman said.

Read the full Columbia Basin Herald article here.

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