NFPA Fast-Tracks Active Shooter Response Standard

NFPA will process NFPA 3000, Standard for Preparedness and Response to Active Shooter and/or Hostile Events, as a provisional standard, which means it would be available for use as early as April 2018. The standard is now open for input until Feb. 23, 2018.

Responding to what it described as the "rising toll of active shooter and hostile events," NFPA announced Feb. 14 it is fast-tracking a new standard for unified response. NFPA will process NFPA 3000, Standard for Preparedness and Response to Active Shooter and/or Hostile Events, as a provisional standard, which means it would be available for use as early as April 2018. The standard is now open for input until Feb. 23, 2018.

The announcement says this is only the second time in NFPA's 121-year history that provisional standard status has been authorized by the NFPA Standards Council.

"Provisional standards are developed when there is a serious life safety concern that warrants an abbreviated standards development process. The typical standards cadence is condensed so that a standard can be issued in a shorter time period in the interest of the public; and in this case, first responder safety. The tragic trend of hostile events in the United States prompted the NFPA's Standards Council to authorize processing of the provisional standard," it says.

It adds that the standard will be useful worldwide, but especially in the United States because 31 percent of all public mass shootings occur here.

"Hostile events are happening with greater frequency and ferocity today. It's critical that we take steps to protect people from this increasing threat," NFPA President Jim Pauley said. "By employing the unified response outlined in NFPA 3000, first responders, facility managers, hospital officials, and community members can minimize risk before, during, and after these devastating incidents. We were clearly hearing the need for such a standard from those on the front lines. Through this process, we are able to respond quickly to provide a critical body of knowledge to those who are faced with such horrendous events, ultimately making them and the public safer."

The new standard establishes preparedness, response, and recovery benchmarks with a focus on integrated protocol and civilian and responder safety. When issued, it will provide guidance for organizing, managing, and sustaining an active preparedness and response program.

Work on it began in October 2016, shortly after the Pulse Nightclub incident. A new NFPA Technical Committee consisting of representatives from the Department of Homeland Security; Department of Justice; the FBI; NSA; national police, fire, and EMS organizations; hospitals; private security; and universities was formed, and initial public comments were gathered in only four months. The Standards Council unanimously approved the new standards project and development of NFPA 3000 began in June 2017.

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