Run, Hide, Fight

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Most of my post topics relate to mystery fiction, historical pop culture, or general “coziness.”  From time to time, though, I’ll post something more public safety-oriented, such as the one this past June about recognizing the real signs of drowning.

In that spirit, here’s an informational video from the City of Houston Office of Public Safety and Homeland Security.  Those Texans sure know how to prepare!   Hope you find it of benefit.  I also hope you never have to employ any of these tactics.

This was sent by my brother-in-law, a career Marine who now works for DHS.  Thanks, Pete!

Ever given any thought to what you would do in such a situation?  Did the video teach you anything new?  I’d love to hear from you!

Until next time,


8 people like this post.

32 thoughts on “Run, Hide, Fight”

  1. Jill KemererJill Kemerer

    Wow, Kathy, this video stunned me. Great advice. I never know what the right course to do is. But it’s reassuring to have expert tips! Thanks!!

  2. Marcy KennedyMarcy Kennedy

    It’s sad that we need instructions like this, but I’m glad they have made a video like this. It seems like common sense, yet in a situation like that, it would be so easy to panic. I’d probably be more of a hider by nature since I’d be worried about running directly into the shooter if I tried to escape.

  3. Piper BayardPiper Bayard

    This video is disturbing. While I agree that anyone who is not prepared should run or hide, why does it assume that the normal American should not be prepared to fight? As a Western girl, I see a lot of people on this video who need proper firearms training and concealed carry permits.

    While we often hear of devastating losses from crazy random killers, there are also often cases where a prepared citizen prevents most of the deaths by taking down the shooter. Why not have a campaign of empowering Americans against these folks instead of treating defense like it can only be properly done by professionals? This isn’t rocket science, and with a bit of instruction and practice, the average adult is capable of defending themselves and others.

    • Jenny HansenJenny Hansen

      Go, Piper!! I become more sure every day that we’re related. 🙂

  4. Gene LemppGene Lempp

    This is an awesome video! While it didn’t teach me anything new (cause writers know weird things like this) it did make me wonder why this isn’t being shown as “required” watching in schools. Heck – it should be a five minute infomercial during sports games or something.

    I think the video is an excellent tool in that most people will panic when a life/death situation arises that they are unprepared for. Having a clue in mind about how one should respond saves lives. However, as Piper points out, there are better ways to handle the systemic nature of events like this – unfortunately those same things tend to have broader side effects. Always the pro and con (pun possibly intended).

    Thanks for sharing this with us, Kathy 🙂

  5. Louise BehielLouise Behiel

    why on earth does some guy have a gun like that? Is he in the army? or is he a cop? or is that one of those semi-automatic guns? my goodness.

    the video was very informative and i’m glad I saw it. It is good information if I should be caught in this situation.

  6. ZackZack

    That is a good video. I think it’s important that people be as prepared as possible for that kind of situation. Federal government agencies require their employees to watch an active shooter video. While the scenario is disturbing, it is all too plausible.

    I think it’s imortant to note the suggested order; run first, hide if necessary, and fight as a last resort. For many of us, defending ourselves and others against a hostile individual is a powerful emotional trigger. But an untrained person’s desire (although heroic) to fight off the individual can possibly make things worse. Adrenaline, anger, fear and other emotions can

    I’m on a SWAT team, and we train constantly. Our actions become instinct. Our training allows us to respond quickly and decisively without having emotions cloud our actions. This isn’t to say that people shouldn’t defend themselves, but studies have supported the advice this video gave.

    Run if possible. Hide if you can’t get out. Lastly, fight the hostile target if there is no other recourse.

    Good video to share, Kathy.

  7. Renee A. Schuls-JacobsonRenee A. Schuls-Jacobson

    NPR just did a report on this the other day. It was fascinating. They talked about the mentaility we have been taught: when a simper comes onto a college campus or into a school, we are taught to stay put and hide rather than fight back or try to escape. But, NPR’s guest noted, that can make people sitting ducks.

    If you have the time, listen to this:

    I know that I am a fighter.

    It doesn’t mean there won’t be risks.

    A person can die based on the decision he/she makes.

    Maybe even die.

    But I think it is important for people to know THEY can make choices about how to handle their own safety.

    On a more personal note, there would be no more Jews in the world if people weren’t willing to resist. That is my history. I’d rather go down with a fight. Always.

    • Zack KullisZack Kullis

      I hear what you are saying Renée. A bit part of the “Run, Hide, Fight” decision is the individual knowing what they are capable of, as well as their personal level of commitment.

      For those individuals that are willing and capable of fighting back, I think there is one more thing they should be aware of and prepared for; the potential of ending another human being’s life.

      Taking another person’s life is a life-changing event. It impacts the family and friends of the person that died, and it will have a huge impact on the life of the person that did the killing.

      Please don’t take my comment as something negative, because it certainly wasn’t meant to be. It is good to be ready to fight for your freedom and life, but go prepared.

      Besides, nobody wants to think of our lovely Renée being put in such a horrible situation. 😉

  8. Sonia G MedeirosSonia G Medeiros

    Amazing video. We don’t want to think these things are necessary but they could be. It’s like seat belts. Most of us may never get in a serious accident but we should always wear a seat belt. Knowing how to handle any emergency is good sense. Thanks for sharing.

  9. jbw0123jbw0123

    I can’t quite get myself to push the ‘like’ button on this one, but thanks anyway. I appreciate that this video does not recommend people get firearms training. How about that guy who, after the Batman shooting, thought it was a good idea to bring his weapon to the movie theater and accidentally shot himself in the derriere? Or the father who just shot his own son in their driveway? The statistics for do-it-yourself self defense are pretty grim. I’m not opposed to learning how to use a gun, but as you say somewhere above, it isn’t practical to have everyone armed and ready, all the time. Hats off to law enforcement in a situation like this. All yours guys/gals. (Found you via Gene Lemp’s Writer’s Treasures.)

  10. Natalie HartfordNatalie Hartford

    Wow. Sad that such videos need to be created BUT what a great video. We never want to think anything bad can happen to us and here’s hoping none of us will ever need the training but being prepared for life’s adversities is just common sense. Thanks for sharing Kathy. I think it was super well done and the message very easy to remember and file away.

  11. Ellie AnnEllie Ann

    That’s good information to know. I hope I won’t ever have to utilize the info, but it’s good to be prepared.

  12. Julie GloverJulie Glover

    Yes, I’ve thought about this before, especially since a hostage situation at the Johnson Space Center near me in 2007 had a shooter in a workplace.

    Being a Texan, I had a little revulsion to the way the people in the video behaved. In a workplace that big, I’m thinking I’d turn to that man or woman (or several of them) who always talk about hunting and 2nd amendment rights and their concealed handgun during coffee breaks. I also don’t think we’d be cowering quite so much down here. Maybe I have a bit of that Texas braggadocio buried in me, but I was a little distraught by the whimpering instead of the “let’s kick some A” attitude that I see with some Texans.

    I’m not for everyone carrying weapons to work, but someone would be wanting to go after this guy. Just sayin’. Overall, the information on the video was good, though.

  13. Jane SadekJane Sadek

    Great info. I’m glad that I don’t go to an office every day, but I have to admit, with the increase of incidents of random shooters I do occasionally think of the risk of doing something as mundane as going shopping or stopping at the post office. It doesn’t overwhelm my life yet, but I can’t help but wonder if fashion will begin to embrace styles that allow for bullet-proof technology. How much has to happen for the man on the street to rethink his habits.

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