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3 tips to surviving active shooter scenario

BROWNWOOD, Texas - Some law enforcement groups are now examining Sunday night's massacre in Las Vegas for lessons on how to improve responding to an active shooter situation.

One of those groups is the ALERRT Center at Texas State University in San Marcos.

Brownwood Police Chief Terry Nichols was one of four people who launched that program, which stands for "Advanced Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training."

ALERRT provides officers and citizens with tactical training on how to best respond in active shooter scenarios. The program has become a standard for law enforcement departments nationwide and a few around the world.

Nichols offered three tips for people caught in an active shooter situation - avoid, deny, defend.

"If you can't avoid, if you can't run away, then get somewhere where you can deny access to your location. Barricade the doors, lock the doors," Nichols said. "Be prepared to defend yourself if the opportunity arises and you have no other options."

ALERRT Began in 2002 as a result of the Columbine High School shooting.

"We taught officers more SWAT team-style tactics meaning working as a team and using more firepower," Nichols said.

But the Las Vegas shooting that killed 59 people and injured more than 500 has presented a different set of challenges to officers, according to Nichols.

"This is probably one of the most difficult ones we've ever seen, especially in the continental United States," he said. "A sniper with an elevated position, shooting from an unknown location upon tens of thousands of people who had no idea where the shots are coming from and no where to go."

He recommended people attending large concert venues to pay attention to where the nearest exits are in case they have to escape.

But, Nichols said citizens need to become proactive in treating their wounds, especially when it comes to stopping a bleed.

"You got to be mentally prepared and also skill-based prepared, meaning trained, to figure out how do you stop that bleeding to keep myself from bleeding to death before help can get to me," Nichols said.

He encouraged people to buy and learn how to use a tourniquet.

He also said a good resource to visit is a website the American College of Surgeons created called bleedingcontrol.org.


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