Information in this section outlines some self-protective measures that you may be able to use should an armed person with unknown intent or an active shooter put your life in danger.
Call 911 as soon as it is safe:
- Tell the operator what you have seen or heard to include number, location, description, clothing worn and activity of the armed person(s), and the type of weapon(s) if you can tell.
If it is safe to leave the building or area do so immediately and find a safe place to wait.
If you do not believe it is safe to leave, go to a lockable room in the building. These rooms may be indicated on building safety plans.
If you can only find a room that cannot be locked:
- Use whatever is available to block the door. Jam chairs, podiums, tables and cabinets against the door.
- Check to see if any windows can be used to make an emergency exit.
- Turn out the lights, remain quiet and hide under tables and chairs.
If a shooter enters your room:
- If you can run from the room and away from the shooter, do so.
- If there is no escape route, you will have to assess the situation and make a difficult decision:
- Lie as still as possible beneath the tables and chairs; or,
- with anything you can use as weapons, physically attack the shooter until you can make an escape or the shooter is unable to continue the attack.
When exiting the building or area do not be mistaken as a dangerous threat:
- Keep your hands fully visible to the police at all times.
- Follow the officer’s instructions and let them approach you. Do not reach or grab for an officer.
- Expect to be escorted to and detained at an assembly area. For your safety, stay put until police identify and release you.
Information will be sent out using William & Mary’s mass notification system as it becomes available.