How to best protect yourself in the event of a mass shooting

It's a difficult question to ask, but it's critical to be aware of your surroundings.

There is very little that can prepare you for a mass shooting. The victims in Sunday’s shooting in Las Vegas were exposed and vulnerable because of their location when compared to the shooter's.

“It is a very lethal situation to be in,” said retired police captain Isabella Maldonado.

The situation: The shooter 32 floors up with a clear line of sight to thousands of people.

LAS VEGAS SHOOTING: At least 59 killed, over 500 others injured

In most mass shootings, the shooter is on the ground and it is clear where the bullets are coming from. In Las Vegas, it took people a while before they realized what was going on and where the bullets were coming from.

In a situation like Las Vegas, the best option is to find cover.

“There are usually some places you can find,” said Maldonado.

We took Maldonado to Chase Field and asked her to help us identify safe places if a shooter was in a high-rise next to the stadium. She pointed out giant stone pillars, other stone decorations, some stone sitting benches and even the roof by the ticket window as safe places.

“You should always look for cover first and then concealment,” said Maldonado.

Concealment would be a plastic sign, a banner, maybe some thick bushes anything that would conceal your location.

“It’s better than nothing,” said Maldonado.

The idea is if the shooter can’t see you, he may not target you.

Ducking or running is typical the usual response when people are faced with a mass shooting scene. Maldonado says both can be effective but you must quickly develop a plan and not stay in one spot exposed or run toward the shooter in a panic.

It’s not easy but trying to identify the shooter to better understand what you are dealing with could ultimately give you the best option for survival.

© 2017 KPNX-TV


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