The truth of the matter is that the world we live in is a dangerous place. School and mass shootings are on the rise. In the midst of this, two questions arise. One being, how can we stop these things from happening. The other question being, how can we better protect ourselves. Some people advocate training and arming more people in more areas to combat an active shooter. While there is a debate on whether this is the right choice, arming people doesn’t shield the innocent from flying bullets. Civilians have a few options other than firearms for active shooter situations.
The first choice in non-combative protection against an active shooter is body armour. This solution is best utilized in a controlled environment such as a school where the number of vests needed can be better accounted for. As the name implies, body armour as a level of ballistic protection to the core of the body. If hit in this region the wearer will still feel the impact, pain, and physical force of a bullet, but they should survive. Body armour, however, does not protect the head or extremities.
Another option during an active shooter situation is a civilian ballistic shield. Shields offer a few other benefits that differ from body armour. For one, they are a better option to have stored and ready in places where the environment is not controlled and the number of civilians is unknown. Shields can also offer head to toe protection when used properly. Another advantage that shields have over body armour is that the protection that they provide can be shared with other civilians.
Experiencing an active shooter scenario is a frightening thing for anyone to go through. While dealing with the shooter is a prime objective, protecting the civilian population is equally important. Civilian body armour and civilian ballistic shield are two options that should be considered more as a means to preserve life. Not everyone will react as planned when armed and facing a shooter. Shields and armour coincide with a more typical reaction. That being self-preservation.