NSU Police Train Students To 'Lockdown On Steroids' In Shooting Event

Friday, February 7th 2014, 11:07 pm
By: News On 6

The conventional approach to handling a gunman in a public place, like a school, has been to turn off the lights and hide, but Northeastern State University is teaching its students a different way to protect themselves.

NSU Police Captain James Bell said the best thing to do is to be prepared for a situation, which is why campus police are teaching a method called ALICE.

ALICE stands for alert, lockdown, inform, counter and evacuate. Bell called this method a "lockdown on steroids."

"There's nothing you can do to make him [the shooter] more angry, but there's a lot of things you can do to distract him, to create chaos and mayhem in that room so that he doesn't have full range," Bell explained.

Bell also said sometimes locking the door is not enough. He demonstrated stacking desks in front of the doorway, which can create an obstacle for the shooter.

"If someone had to come through that door, it's going to take time now. Sure, it's not totally secure, but it's going to slow them down," Bell added.

"In an active shooter situation, someone dies every 14 seconds, so if we can slow that time down, we can save lives."

The captain said having a plan during this crisis situation is key.

"If you think about it ahead of time, you have a plan in your head, you're able to react and that's a big part of this program," Bell said.

Bell also showed wrapping a simple thing, like a belt, around the doorknob could mean the difference between life and death.

"We can get in here and hold it shut and if we get two or three people on my back helping me hold this door shut, nobody's going to get in that door," Bell demonstrated.

NSU Police are planning an ALICE instructor training this summer for other law enforcement agencies.