Active Shooter or Terrorist
This page is designed to provide basic guidance in the event of a terrorist attack taking place near your unit, similar to the events of 7th July 2005 in London or 12th November 2015 in Paris.
IN THE RARE EVENT OF a firearms or weapons attack
RUN to a place of safety. This is a far better option than surrender or negotiate. If there is nowhere to go, then……
HIDE, its better to hide than to confront. Remember to turn your phone to silent and turn off vibrate. Barricade yourself in if you can. Then finally and only when it is safe to do so……
TELL the Police by calling 999
For more information - including wider Government Security Advice
- to watch a training film, visit gov.uk/ACT
- Information is vital. If you see something that could be terrorist related, trust your instincts and call the confidential Anti-Terrorist hotline on 0800 789 321
- Specially trained officers will take it from there. Your call could save lives.
- Always in an emergency , call 999
- For comprehensive Government Security Advice for a wide range of sectors go to (cut and paste into your browser) https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/national-counter-terrorism-security-office
For more detailed scenarios...
Following a special – Project Argos -training event conducted by the Police at Mount Pleasant, the above guidance was explored in more detail against the following scenarios. Scroll down to find the advice provided.
- There has been an explosion and/or shootings thought to be terrorist related in your locality.
- There is terrorist activity in your immediate vicinity, possibly approaching your building
- There are terrorists that have entered your building
- You are instructed to evacuate your building and move your people outside a cordon that the police have established – because of a terrorist related incident in your locality.
Scenario 1: There has been an explosion and/or shootings thought to be terrorist related in your locality.
Look after your people
- Keep people in your building – do not allow delivery, collection staff to leave , or shifts to leave. Advise any visitors, customers or contractors to also remain.
- Note: Standard RM guidance is for people who cannot attend their normal place of work should report to their nearest accessible RM unit.
- Where possible move people away from glass frontages and move to safer internal areas.
- Note: You cannot legally hold people against their will, but brief people that is the correct action to take and make a note in your incident log of anyone leaving.
- Contact delivery & collection staff via PDAs (via Comms) or via individual contacts in your book rooms. Instruct people to return to the office – if it is safe to do so, but to obey Police instructions that they may encounter en route.
- Tell CPC what you know, what actions you are taking and await instructions from CPC.
- Watch BBC news for information and general guidance to the Public.
- Check local travel companies – if the Underground, buses and train services are being suspended this provides a sense of the scale of the incident and difficulties for your people.
- Brief your people and your H&S reps
- As far as practical , use your Stay Calm incident log to record your decisions and to manage the situation. This will help you brief others, manage the situation and learn lessons from the incident.
- Given the above, maintain normal operations as far as possible.
Scenario 2: There is terrorist activity in your immediate vicinity, possibly approaching your building
Lock down your building
- As far as possible lock doors and stop people entering or leaving the building.
- Deactivate the fire alarm – you do not want large numbers of people trying to evacuate.
- Your Stay Calm unit plan should explain how to deactivate the alarms.
- Note: if your building is glass fronted, check with Group Property as to it’s composition. Some glass will not shatter if shot, others will, but none will protect against bullets.
Communicate to your people
- Use your tannoy system to advise people to move to internal safe areas and away from windows and central areas. Advise which routes to use.
- As far as practical , use your Stay Calm incident log to record your decisions and to manage the situation. The Stay Calm unit & building plan should identify the safe areas and routes to use.
Inform the police
- Only when safe to do so, it is vital that you ring 999.
- Know your location – postcode and exact point of entrance onto the street.
- Provide as much information as possible about the individuals you have seen, but especially
- Are they carrying hand guns and/or shoulder rifles
- Are they wearing back packs or possible suicide belts and /or ammunition belts
Stay put – until the all clear is given , or unless the terrorists enter your building- in which case see advice under the next section
Scenario 3: There are terrorists that have entered your building
Stay Calm ...move away from shooting - hide & be quiet ...
- Stay Calm, and calm other people down – quietly insist they follow you – but do not be held up by people who freeze.
- Identify a destination – a possible pre-established safe area – and a route to get there.
- Move as quickly as possible to that destination and especially away from any shooting.
- Ideally seek to hide from sight and behind a material that will stop bullets. If possible secure your immediate environment.
- Turn your phone off – make sure vibrate is also off.
- Only when you consider safe to do so, ring 999
- Stay Put and Stay Quiet – until the Police find you- even if that is many hours.
- Note: the police do not know that you are not a terrorist – they will be aggressive – do exactly what they say, keep your hands in view and do not make any sudden movements.
Scenario 4: You are instructed to evacuate your building and move your people outside a cordon that the police have established – because of a terrorist related incident in your locality.
Look after your people
- As far as practical , use your Stay Calm incident log to record your decisions and to manage the situation. The log prompts you to;
- Account for your people (although this may be very difficult)
- Gather a small team around you to help manage the situation
- Think about a range of welfare issues that your people may be facing – shock, keys and wallets left behind etc.
- Be alert to any of your people who have underlying medical issues and help as appropriate.
- Inform CPC of your situation, and the instructions which have been issued by the police.
- Confirm who has the keys and whether the unit was locked on exit.
- Brief your people – and your H&S rep – as far as you can.
- Inform Next of Kin? – I don’t think this is realistic.
- Tell people to check Myroyalmail.com for updates on when the building will be accessible, or where to attend in the interim. (Nearest RMG site is the default)
Inform the police
- Of anything you have seen which may be serious or relevant to the situation (you may be a vital witness)
- Otherwise , do what the Police tell you to do – which is most likely to be make your way home.
The generic guidance contained here is provided by the Metropolitan Police and the National Counter Terrorism Security Office through their Project Argos exercises. More information is available below.
Please note that you must always follow instructions issued by the Police in response to an incident.
The guidance is set against four possible scenarios, use the scenario which most closely fits your situation.
Italics indicates activity that should be done in advance and included in your Stay Calm unit plan.
If in doubt at any stage always call Central Postal Control (CPC)
Central Postal Control deals with issues on a regular basis and will be able to talk you through how to deal with any situation.