Course Review: FEMA IS907 Active Shooter: What You Can Do
Here at ASR, we take critical incident response very seriously. We specialize in the field of alert notifications to Law Enforcement and First Responders in the event of an active shooter or other crisis. Our mission is to save lives when these tragedies strike.
ASR Alert Systems spends a great deal of time working to educate the public about active shooter protocols when events happen. Today we would like to highlight and discuss a FEMA course that is available to the general public.
The History of FEMA Training
FEMA EMI traces its heritage from the former National CDSC that was developed and conducted in response to the cold war. To facilitate meeting this national threat, the federal government opened the training facility and rescue school in Olney, Maryland in 1951. April 1, 1951, marked the stand-up of the Staff College. The first course was titled – Civil Defense Administration.
Due to concerns during the Cold War, a Presidential Order moved the Federal Civil Defense Administration (FCDA) and the Civil Defense Staff College (CDSC) to Battle Creek, Michigan, in response to the increasing threat of attack on Washington, DC. CDSC continued teaching courses in program administration and finance, civil defense operations, and radiological monitoring among others, to state and local personnel. By 1979, some new courses had been created on natural disaster operations, and the FCDA was aligned under the Department of Defense and had since been renamed the Defense Civil Preparedness Agency (DCPA).
By 1970, emergency and disaster activities across the nation were still fragmented. Many parallel programs and policies existed at the state and local levels, simplifying the complexity of federal disaster relief efforts. The National Governor’s Association sought to decrease the many agencies with which state and local governments were forced to work. In the late 1970s, they asked President Carter to centralize federal emergency functions.
President Carter signed Executive Order 12127, effective April 1, 1979, establishing the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). President Carter gave the agency the dual mission of emergency management and civil defense. These combined orders brought together a number of Federal agencies that had involvement in disasters to form the new organization known as FEMA. Also in 1979, President Carter dedicated the former St. Joseph’s College in Emmitsburg, Maryland, as the FEMA National Emergency Training Center (NETC). NETC then became the home for the National Fire Academy (NFA) and the renamed Staff College, which became the Emergency Management Institute (EMI), to reflect its now broader training role. The move from Battle Creek, Michigan, to Emmitsburg was completed in the fall of 1980, and the first EMI class was conducted in January 1981.
Today. the EMI is committed to its mission in preparing the nation, to make ready our nation's emergency management workforce and the whole community for disasters. EMI continues to innovate how they deliver the important, essential training and education to further build the profession. One such training of particular value to the general public is FEMA IS907.
FEMA IS907 Active Shooter: What You Can Do
When an active shooter event happens, critical decisions must be made almost instantly to save lives. IS907 focuses on the actions everyone should take to help mitigate the loss of life during an active shooter incident.
While there is no way to prevent casualties, we can reduce the amount and severity of the tragic consequences when an active shooter event happens. During the course, FEMA shares tools and perspectives anyone may use to save their own lives and the lives of others.
Course Overview Per FEMA
An active shooter is an individual actively engaged in killing or attempting to kill people in confined and other populated areas. In most cases, active shooters use firearms and there is no pattern or method to their selection of victims. Active shooter situations are unpredictable and evolve quickly.
All employees can help prevent and prepare for potential active shooter situations. This course provides guidance to individuals, including managers and employees, so that they can prepare to respond to an active shooter situation.
This course is not written for law enforcement officers, but for non-law enforcement employees. The material may provide law enforcement officers information on recommended actions for non-law enforcement employees to take should they be confronted with an active shooter situation.
Per FEMA, the Course Objectives are:
- Describe actions to take when confronted with an active shooter and responding law enforcement officials.
- Recognize potential workplace violence indicators.
- Describe actions to take to prevent and prepare for potential active shooter incidents.
- Describe how to manage the consequences of an active shooter incident.
ASR employees have taken IS907 and readily agree that the training is of great benefit to the general public. We found it especially important that the course simplifies the actions victims can take while also alerting them as to what they can expect if they find themselves in an active shooter situation.
Of special note:
- Did you know that Run, Hide, Fight is NOT a set of step-by-step instructions, but rather a list of possible actions a victim can take based upon the situation? Making a quick and educated decision on which action to take is key.
- When electing to hide, did you know there is a difference between cover and concealment?
- Did you know that the first officers that arrive on an active scene are NOT there to help the wounded?
- Did you know that an Emergency Action Plan is useful in preparing for an active shooter situation?
The IS907 course covers these details and so much more.
While active shooter events are inherently unpredictable, there is so much we can learn and plenty we can do to stop active shooter events. By preparing prior to an event, we can lessen the impacts of active shooters when they do strike. Having simple, straightforward, and memorable steps in our minds can help greatly. Practicing these steps on a regular basis can build our muscle memory and increase our chances of survival and the survival of those around us.
To take the FEMA IS907 course yourself, you will need a FEMA Student Identification Number. Obtaining a FEMA student ID is free, you can register for yours HERE.
To take the FEMA IS907 Course, CLICK HERE. Upon completion and a minimum passing score of 75%, a completion certificate will be emailed to you. The course takes about 1 hour.