How to Be Safe If You’re Caught in a Mass Shooting (Part III)

If you can’t run the next best thing is to hide.

If something does break off and you’ve been aware of what’s going on around you, you’ll be able to make a run to the nearest exit, find something to hide behind or some other way to get yourself out of harm’s way. When you sit down in a movie theater or get on a plane, you’re asked to make note of the nearest exit and how to get there if there’s an emergency. You should note exits any time you enter any store or

Run, Hide, Fight

If you’re in a dangerous situation, particularly one where the real threat might not be clear and there are panic and fear around you, the golden rule to remember and follow is run, hide, then fight. Your objectives must be to get away from the danger first. If that’s not feasible, it must be to get yourself to a spot where you’ll be safe until the danger is over.


If you have a clear exit, this is the ideal choice. Don’t worry about any of your personal belongings, just drop it and run. Try to get other folks to leave with you if they will do so ASAP. If you can see a shooter, he can see you, so try to crouch and run as rapidly as you can so that you aren’t an easy target. Keep running until you get to a place of safety. Keep running as long as you can.


If there’s no way out, hiding is the next option, which means getting behind a car, tree or another big solid object that gets you both out of sight and protected. Most of these kinds of incidents only last for a couple of minutes. If possible, do what US elementary school students are trained to do and hide in a locked room – a dark, quiet and secure one.