This month’s deadly shootings at the Gilroy Garlic Festival and El Paso, Texas, has reignited discussions on finding solutions to mass shootings but, in the meantime, some companies are arming people with knowledge about how to stop an active shooter.
Matt Klier is the owner of Active Shooter Defense School in San Diego, he is also a former police officer and Navy veteran.
ASDS provides training on practical shooting defensive skills, tactical and operational training. They train private individuals, law enforcement and military personnel.
He tells NBC 7 that being observant is the first step before being faced with an active shooter situation.
“You want to be a hard target and you want to be aware of your environment,” Klier said.
Schools, banks, festivals, and movie theatres are what experts are calling “soft targets”, particularly vulnerable for their open space and relative lack of security.
There have been 249 mass shootings so far – all at soft target locations.
He advises people to revert to the “run, hide, fight” protocol and to be ready to use items around you for defense.
For example – in a supermarket.
“There are canned goods and booze bottles. Fire extinguishers are one of my favorite, especially the ones in supermarkets cause it’s ABC, and you spray it at them and hopefully it gets in their eyes, causes that burns,” he explained.
And he’s warning people.
“It’s not as loud as you think if it’s three walls away it might sound like a book falling off a shelf. It might sound like someone took a fall. If you hear something that even resembles a gunshot, make a phone call. Don’t go out and investigate,” he advised. “You don’t get the choice of whether or not you’re going to be that victim, they chose. And that’s the scary part.”
He advises people to take active shooting defense classes and to always be aware of their surroundings.