Active Shooter events represent those low frequency but high consequence events that can genuinely challenge our fire service and emergency medical response capabilities. For this reason, and to help tilt the balance of providing the most effective lifesaving services while keeping our members safe, it is vital to implement a full suite of tools, so to speak. This can involve comprehensive training based on sound standard operating procedures, protective ballistic gear, supportive communications capabilities, and medical intervention equipment to address a mass casualty incident and save as many lives as possible in a dynamic threat environment.
In order to foster the success of incident command at these challenging incidents, the IAFC Terrorism and Homeland Security Committee developed a practical Incident Command Checklist for Active Shooter Incidents Checklist. This checklist will serve to organize the incident commanders' thought process during this highly stressful, low frequency -- but high consequence event -- and provide a template for lifesaving success. Beginning with the moment of the alarm's receipt, this command level checklist intuitively guides the user through all phases with areas for check-off of items, white space for clarity, color coding for various phases of response and operations, and a scratchpad to visually represent on-going operations. Please feel free to customize according to the needs of your department, and we hope this is a helpful tool in your response kit. Stay Safe.
Thomas J. Currao is FDNY Chief of Counterterrorism and Emergency Preparedness and a member of the IAFC's Terrorism and Homeland Security Committee.