Active Shooter or Lockdown

In the event of a shooting on campus, immediately take the following steps for your own safety.  These steps follow the Run, Hide, Fight model:

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Run (Evacuate)

If there is an accessible escape path, attempt to evacuate the premises.

  • Have an escape route and plan in mind.
  • Evacuate regardless of whether others agree to follow.
  • Leave your belongings behind.
  • Help others evacuate, if possible.
  • Do not attempt to move wounded people.
  • Keep your hands visible.
  • Prevent individuals from entering an area where the active shooter may be.
  • Call 9-1-1 when you are safe and provide the building number, name, floor, room, a description of the suspect, your name, and your phone number.
  • Follow instructions of police officers.


If evacuation is not possible, hide in a place where the active shooter is less likely to find you.  Your hiding place should:

  • Be out of the active shooter's view.
  • Provide protection if shots are fired in your direction (e.g., office with a closed and locked door).
  • Not trap you or restrict your options for movement.
  • Have access to a hard-wired phone, if possible.

Fight (Protect Yourself)

As a last resort, and only when your life is in imminent danger, attempt to disrupt and/or incapacitate the shooter.

  • Act as aggressively as possible against the shooter.
  • Throw items and use improvised weapons.
  • Yell.
  • Commit to your actions.

If the Active Shooter is Nearby

  • Lock the door.
  • Silence electronic devices (e.g., cell phone, pager, radio, television).
  • Block the door with heavy furniture.
  • Hide behind large items (e.g., cabinets, desks) and help those that require assistance.
  • Remain quiet.
  • If you call 9-1-1, but cannot speak, leave the sound off, but keep the line open for dispatchers to hear what is happening.

When Law Enforcement Arrives

  • Remain calm.
  • Put down any items in your hands.
  • Keep hands visible.
  • Follow all instructions.
  • Avoid making quick movements toward officers.
  • If evacuating, do not stop to ask officers for help or directions.  Proceed in the direction from which officers are entering the premises.  


If you are ordered into lockdown, this temporary sheltering technique can limit exposure to an armed intruder or similar incident.

  • Find an interior room with few or no windows and a door that can be locked or barricaded, as well as a hard-wired phone.
  • Turn off lights and electronics (if time and safety permits).
  • Silence cell phones.
  • Stay away from windows.
  • Do not open the door unless you are certain the person wanting access is not a threat.
  • Wait until the "All Clear" is announced.
  • Have a personal lockdown plan for your work area.  If your office door cannot be locked, find a nearby room that can be locked.

See Also