In wake of recent mass shootings around the country, the Collier County Sheriff’s Office is making it a priority to teach residents simple steps that could save lives during an active shooter situation.
“We don’t want people to be fearful, but we want them to be empowered,” said Collier County Sheriff Kevin Rambosk.
The sheriff says active shooter incidents are unpredictable and happen quickly, “the type of tragedy is just really unthinkable… but we have to think about it each and every day.”
Rambosk says there’s a simple strategy to keep you safe from an active shooter: Run, hide, fight.
“If you hear what sounds like fireworks or a car back firing, today we want you to stop, think, look around and say ‘is this okay? Is there something I should be concerned about?'” Rambosk explained.
The best course of action in the situation is to run away, Rambosk said, but if you can’t, look for a secure place to hide.
“Barricade the door with furniture, turn off your cell phone, text if you have to so you won’t be found out,” Rambosk said, “but make sure people don’t know where you’re at to the best you can.”
If necessary, the next step is to take action and fight for your life.
“Whether it be terror, hate or mental illness, the likelihood of you surrendering or negotiating is not going to turn out well,” Rambosk said. “Terrorists want us to be fearful and stop living, that is the one thing we shouldn’t and cannot do. We need to go live life to the fullest, do it safely. Most people are good people, we can’t let terrorists have the final word.”
Since December, the sheriff’s office has trained 24 groups on the active shooter scenarios. Officials plan to increase the training following Sunday’s mass shooting in Orlando.