Sheridan College is reminding the community about the school’s Active Assailant Procedure.
The possibility, however remote, exists that an active shooter could make their way on campus. The more prepared you are, the better chance you’ll survive. It may be a rare occurrence, but it has happened before – to a point.
A lockdown occurred at Trafalgar Campus on February 8, 2008 over reports of an armed gunman on campus. While the “weapon” was actually a microphone stand, the fear of those inside the campus was real.
Darby Pierson is Sheridan’s Emergency Manager. She wants the Sheridan community to think about what it would do in a dangerous situation.
“Encouraging people to think about their response to an active shooter could save a life,” she said in an email interview.
Three hundred seventeen new emergency clocks have been placed across three campuses. These clocks can display a visual message, as well as play an audio message. This is a big and important improvement over the old system, which featured only 12 audio speakers that could not display visual messages.
Sheridan community members who have installed the Sheridan Alert App will also be notified if push notifications have been enabled. If you do not have the app installed, you can download it from Google Play and the App Store.
There is no standard escape plan for every potential situation. Everyone should know where the nearest exit is and scout possible hiding places are. Thinking ahead can mean the difference between life and death.
For some, the decision is easy.
“I would probably hide,” said Sheridan student, Michael Wojcik.
Sheridan’s Active Assailant Procedure requires people to assess their situation, consider their options, then take action.
The best option is usually to get out. If there is a clear and safe option to an exit, it should be used immediately.
If leaving is not an option, the next best thing to do is hide. A lockable door works best, and it can be barricaded with large, heavy items that are available. Turning off the lights, hiding from view, and silencing phones are also required.
Attempting to incapacitate the intruder should only be used as a last resort. Striking the intruder with an object, tripping them up with a chair, and throwing items at them are viable options if running or hiding are not possible.
If a group of people are trapped together, it’s alright if some people’s decisions differ from others.
But how you get out of a dangerous situation is up to you.
“It’s okay if your response is different from your classmates, professor, or other people in the room … You can encourage others around you to take action for themselves. Keep in mind that your first responsibility if to yourself.”Darby Pierson, Emergency Manager, Sheridan College
If you see an armed intruder on campus, call 911, then call Campus Security at 905-845-9430 ext. 4444.