After sitting in a 90-minute session about active shooters this morning with Albuquerque Police Chief Ray Schultz and Starbucks’ Steve Bova, I’ve got a new appreciation for both the planning and the real-time reactions involved in dealing with workplace violence.
In fact, a recreation of a July 2010 active shooter situation at Emcore in Albuquerque, NM, left me – and many other attendees at NRF’s Loss Prevention Conference – breathless. You could hear a collective gasp for air from the hundreds of people who spent 110 seconds watching a real-time reenactment of a man walk through a parking lot, murder his girlfriend, leap into the company from a broken window, and troll the halls looking for his next victim. The gunman fired 23 rounds in two and a half minutes before killing himself.
It all happened so fast. I was, quite simply, stunned.
After the session, we had a chance to sit down with Schultz, who took time to talk specifically about the active shooter situation at Emcore, discuss why planning for active shooter situations is “today’s modern fire drill,” share what to tell employees about how police will approach these incidents, and outline the extreme consequences that could result if your company faces an active shooter situation and you’re not properly prepared.
These pieces of advice are essential for any executive in loss prevention, human resources, or senior management.