Creating an Incident Response Plan

Over the past several years I have given several presentations regarding safety and security.  The common question I get is that all safety and security training and information focuses on the problem and doesn’t necessarily give a solution.  That’s why I have always focused on giving solutions rather than stating the problem.  Obviously, we know there’s a problem or I wouldn’t be there to discuss solutions.  Let’s dig into what an incident response plan is and how to start implementing one for your facility. 

What is an Incident Response Plan?

People may argue with me, but there is a big difference between a safety plan and an incident response plan.  A safety plan encompasses all safety concerns that can happen on a daily basis.  An incident response plan focuses on major events that could have a traumatic impact on the quality of life for you and patrons.  An incident response plan should be simple and to the point.  The biggest thing that can be accomplished by an incident response plan is giving your staff a proactive way to respond to a reactive situation.  People always revert back to the way they were trained in high stress situations.  Not being trained could result in unneeded panic that leads to a significant increase in the potential for injury.

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Get responders there!

 Objectives of an Incident Response Plan

  1. The plan will be organized and specific for a variety of possible emergencies.
  2. This plan will provide for the safety of all patrons and stakeholders.
  3. This plan will include the use of CRS Notify emergency alert system and the means of communication during an emergency.
  4. This plan will seek to minimize liability that may develop during a crisis situation.
  5. This plan will focus on proactive measures, rather than reactive.
  6. This plan will help staff members, patrons, and other stakeholders on identifying and responding to potential threats and emergency situations.

Mission of an Incident Response Plan 

To use innovative technology and response tactics to provide a safe environment through the development of a practical and effective emergency response plan which will established a community response in any situation that threatens their quality of life.



[Your Facility] incorporates the option of choice, to either run, fight, or hide during an active shooter or deadly attack situation.  This method will require all current and future faculty members as well as patrons should be trained.  Training through presentation should be completed monthly.  Practical training should be at the discretion of administration.

Starting an Incident Response Policy

[Your Facility] utilizes a response options method when responding to armed intruders, active shooters, and deadly attacks. This method will allow faculty members any applicable subordinates or patrons, to guide themselves and others who are in lockdown to make the best decision possible under the given circumstances.  It’s recommended that faculty members, subordinates, and patrons to first go into a lock down mode in the event of an active shooter or deadly attack.  Once in lockdown, the decisions under the circumstances require them to follow one of the following options:

  1. Freeze and remain in lockdown mode
  2. Counter attack using any available object(s). Remember, don’t try to be a hero, but this tactic should be utilized in the event the intruder has breached entry into your location and you are in direct threat or under attack.
  3. Evacuate to the pre-determined community rally point.

The goal is to give staff options when responding to any threats.  Giving options allows them to create a survival mindset should they be in a compromising situation.

Please feel free to email me if you have any questions with getting your incident response plan started. 


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