One week after the tragic Colorado shooting that killed 12 and injured dozens of others during the premier of “The Dark Knight Rises,” the city of Houston has released a video funded by the Department of Homeland Security aimed at educating people on how to survive a similar incident.
The video called “Run. Hide. Fight.” depicts a man armed with a shotgun walking into an office building and opening fire on several people.
A narrator then gives people three options to better their chances of survival.
The options are:
Run if a safe path is available. Always try and escape or evacuate even if others insist on staying.
Encourage others to leave with you but don't let the indecision of others slow down your own effort to escape.
Once you are out of the line of fire, try to prevent others from walking into the danger zone and call 911.
But if you can't get out safely, find a place to hide and turn out lights, remember to lock doors and silence your ringer and vibration mode on your cell phone
As a last resort, act with aggression and use any improvised weapons nearby and fight.
Tyler Police watched the video Friday and gave kudos to Houston for tackling the issue.
“The video is not overly graphic, but gets the point across in an easy manner. It looks at every step available and goes through how best to implement a course of action in such an event,” he said.
Tyler police and Smith County Sheriff's deputies know all too well how the scenario can play out.
On Feb. 24, 2005, David Arroyo Sr. opened fire outside the Smith County Courthouse killing his estranged wife, and private citizen Mark Wilson, who attempted to stop Arroyo.
Arroyo shot and injured his son and several peace officers before being killed after a short pursuit from the courthouse.
Dennis Storemski, Houston Mayor's Office of Public Safety and Homeland Security director, said his office utilized DHS funds for the project.
“We produced it. Gilbreath Communications was our contractor that did the filming and casting. We did use our SWAT team and other (Houston Police Department) personnel and the rest were professional actors. It was filmed at the city's new Permitting Center on a weekend,” he said.
Houston Mayor Annise Parker said the video was produced in hopes that it provides key steps individuals should take if they encounter an active shooter.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims of Aurora's tragic shooting, along with their friends, family and community,” said Mayor Annise Parker in a statement. “I can't imagine the horror and grief. If it is at all possible for any good to come out of it, perhaps it can be letting people know the options to consider if it happens again.”
“We hope our residents are never confronted with such an event, but we want to prepare them with some important information if they ever find themselves in this situation,” he said.
Martin said after watching the video the Tyler Police Department recommends residents, businesses and organizations take precautions.
“We do highly recommend that every business and organization in Tyler develop and implement a plan to deal with workplace violence. It would be just like practicing for a fire drill, but every person needs to know what to do in case something like this happens,” he said.