UCIPD’s Five Ways to be an Active Bystander
1. What to do if there is a shooter on campus:
“Run, hide, fight in a dangerous situation like this,” Sergeant Bob LeSage said.
They urge students to try and get off campus and away from danger as soon as possible. Students should then proceed to hide, hunker down and barricade themselves in a closed room. Only if it is a matter of life or death should one ever physically intervene/fight. If it does boil down to a confrontation, bear in mind that 96 percent of shooters act alone, so there is a better chance of putting up a fight. This “run, hide, fight” technique can be found on YouTube for those who are interested.
2. What to do when police arrive on the scene:
“To some people, we may appear overly aggressive and rough when we show up in response to a call, but that’s only because we are in a hurry to get to the source of the problem and do our job.”
Know that if and when the police arrive on the scene, you as a bystander must do everything the police tell you and follow their instructions to the letter. Not only will this help the whole situation go smoothly, but it can also help keep yourself and others around you safe.
3. What to do if it is difficult to talk in a situation:
Try and call 911 anyways. Depending on whether the call is on or off-campus, it might reach the UCIPD or Newport PD. Thankfully, these police departments cooperate with one another so all information ends up in the same place. Sergeant LeSage was able to shed some light on this scenario as well.
“If you find that you can’t speak in a certain situation, call 911 and leave the line open so we can hear everything that transpires.” This way, the police will be kept notified about the situation without putting the caller’s life in danger.
4. What to do if a student appears to be in danger:
“See, say, do,” is UC Irvine PD’s motto.
If a fellow student is in danger, the observer should immediately call the police, even against all doubt. Physical intervention is necessary only when the student is in immediate, grave danger. “We always recommend intervening as a last resort,” Sergeant LeSage advised. For most situations though, calling the police is the most useful and safest way to go.
5. What to do if a suspicious-looking person is seen wandering around campus:
“You should always keep your eyes and ears peeled.”
If anything seems unusual, like a person surveying buildings or an unattended backpack or bag, be wary; if the situation calls for it, alert UCIPD. If possible, memorize the exits of common buildings, as well as the layout of its environment in case running becomes necessary. UCIPD hopes to make safety videos mandatory for freshmen orientation.