KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — While D.C. Metro Police said the shooting in front of the Washington Nationals ballpark Saturday night was an isolated incident, it can serve as a reminder to be aware of your surroundings as you head back to large events.
The Knoxville Police Department said they have had a handful of businesses reach out to them just recently about active shooter training.
“A lot of businesses are really starting to rethink ‘Hey, We’re starting to get crowds back in, What do we need to do to protect them as they start to come back into our areas,'” explained Officer John Morgan with the Safety Education Unit with KPD.
He says they stress three words: Run, hide, fight.
“If you can get out of an area, then get out,” started Officer Morgan. “If you can’t, you’re trapped, if you can hide somewhere until the danger passes until the police get there on the scene and get control of the situation.” Lastly, he said if a person comes face to face with the potential danger or threat is when it’s time to fight.
He said during these situations it’s also important to remember some people may need leadership. “If you’re running to get out and somebody is just froze up and they don’t know what to do or which way to go, try to take them with you,” he said. “If they can’t, you may have to leave them behind.”
Officer Morgan said other things people can do while out at large events or in crowds is to report suspicious behavior or objects as soon as they notice them. “If you see something out that looks dangerous or potentially may be a hazard or whatever, go ahead and call 911 and say something, find security and report it to them,” said Morgan. “Say something to somebody so maybe we can catch it before something does happen.”
Officer Morgan also said it’s all about creating a habit of awareness. “Every time you walk out of your house, be aware of your surroundings,” said Officer Morgan. “When you go into any kind of a large area or there’s going to be crowds, a business, malls, whatever, be aware of your surroundings at all times, make note of your exits.”
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The Knoxville Police Department does free active shooter training for businesses and organizations within city limits. To schedule or request a training, call the Knoxville Police Department Community Outreach Program at 865-215-1510.