Stephen Hasner | Workers' Compensation | July 17, 2018
Most employees expect to attend training sessions regarding safety equipment, anti-discrimination, and other workplace policies. It is a sad day when companies need to plan training sessions regarding what to do if a shooter enters the workplace—though that day is here. It seems that we hear about mass shootings on a regular basis, and many of these horrific events take place in businesses. The following are only some of the workplace shootings that have taken place around the United States in the past few years:
- 2015 – Inland Regional Center in San Bernardino, California – 14 fatalities, 21 injured
- 2015 – Planned Parenthood in Colorado Springs, Colorado – Three fatalities, nine injured
- 2016 – Excel Industries in Hesston, Kansas – Three fatalities, 14 injured
- 2017 – Edgewood business park in Edgewood, Maryland – Three fatalities, three injured
- 2017 – Nursing home in Kirkersville, Ohio – Three fatalities
- 2017 – Supermarket in Tunkhannock, Pennsylvania – Three fatalities
- 2017 – UPS in San Francisco, California – Three fatalities, two injured
- 2017 – Manufacturer in Orlando, Florida – Five fatalities
In addition to shootings in warehouses or office building, we should not forget that schools are workplaces for teachers, maintenance crews, administrators, and more. Each school shooting is a workplace shooting for school employees, and they have the added pressure of protecting the students when possible.
All of this tragic news leads to a difficult reality—you should know what to do if a shooter enters your workplace to prevent being injured or killed. First, get out of the work building as fast as you can if at all possible. Leave everything and evacuate if you are able to. If you cannot escape right away, try to find a hiding place, such as a closet or a conference room. Somewhere with a door you can blockade is often the safest, though nothing can provide full protection from an enraged shooter. Make sure any cell phones or computer notifications are silenced to avoid drawing attention. In some situations, you may not be able to successfully escape or hide, and your life may be in danger. At this point, grab anything you can to use as a weapon to incapacitate the shooter.
If you are ever injured by an act of workplace violence, you can be entitled to compensation from workers’ compensation. In addition, if you lost a loved one in a workplace attack, you may be able to obtain death benefits through the workers’ compensation program. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that there were 500 homicides reported in workplaces in 2016 in the United States. Many involved robberies, patients, students, or coworkers, but this shocking number illustrates that mass shootings are far from the only threat of violence when you go to work.
Call an Atlanta Workers’ Compensation Law Firm as Soon as Possible
Hasner Law wants everyone to stay safe at their jobs, and we hope you never have to go through the trauma of a violent attack at work. If you do suffer any type of workplace injury, we are ready to assist you.
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