I’ve recently read yet another article espousing that the common Run-Hide-Fight training for active shooter/hostile event attacks isn’t appropriate because the persons involved in the incident are not trained fighters. These articles and the so-called experts quoted in them are beyond frustrating. The problem is very simple – someone is trying to kill people. Potential victims must be able to do whatever they can and need to do to survive. They may not be track stars or professional hide and seek competitors, either. That doesn’t mean that their efforts won’t contribute to evading harm and, ultimately, surviving.
The Run-Hide-Fight training also emphasizes these actions as options. Ideally, this is something to execute in order. Run, but if you can’t get away from harm, then hide. If you are found, then you fight for your life. That said, there may be occasions when someone is immediately confronted by an attacker, with no ability to run or hide. At that point, the victim has two options… fight for your life or succumb to the attacker. Fight doesn’t even mean you need to subdue the attacker, but perhaps create an opportunity to run. Fundamentally, you do what you need to in order to survive. The rules of polite society are not valid in this situation.
There are other popular programs in use, but these can be too complex. The steps they follow are great, but in the panic of an incident, simplicity will prove essential to survival rather than trying to figure out what a lengthy acronym stands for. There are also systems that use terms other than ‘fight’, instead using terms like disrupt or counter. Those should always be options considered prior to an actual physical confrontation, if possible, but it’s short sighted, and in fact dangerous to eliminate or talk around the potential need to fight for survival.
© 2019 Timothy Riecker, CEDP
2 thoughts on “Run, Hide, and Fight – It’s a Matter of Survival”
IMHO, this is a prime example of the author over-analyzing things, and possibly expecting too much from the public. Whatever happened to the KISS theory? This post especially drew my attention, because a person from a local college was working a large graduation event. They were lamenting that they had never had ALICE training and were wondering what to do if something sinister were to occur. I did not try to even explain ALICE (being in the business I can’t even remember the acronym anyway), and sent her a Run, Hide, Fight video. In 2 1/2 minutes, it was able to provide her the guidance she needed to feel more comfortable in her situation. Not to mention, if everyone got on board the Run, Hide, Fight train, maybe someday it would become as ingrained in our culture as Stop, Drop, and Roll!
100% agree with this!