ALBANY, N.Y — As the entire nation continues to grieve with two communities devastated by two mass shooting in the span of 24 hours, leaving 29 individuals dead, many are wondering how safe are public places they visit.
The mass shootings in El Paso, Texas and Dayton, Ohio took place in very public places. In El Paso it was at a Walmart shopping center. In Dayton, the shooter opened fire on a busy downtown street. News10’s Giuliana Bruno sat down with a national security expert to discuss ways to stay safe in the face of an active shooter situation.
“The best thing we can do is just be aware,” explained Rick Mathews from the National Center for Security and Preparedness.
If you are anywhere and hear gunshots, he said, “Instinctively by the way, we will typically turn our head toward the sound without even thinking about it.” So run the opposite way from where you hear the sound.
Before violence occurs, there could be warning signs. Lieutenant Steven Stockdale from the Warren County Sheriff’s Office added what his department considers suspicious activity. “We look for people inappropriately dressed for the season, unattended parcels, backpacks, bags along those lines.”
Other local departments reacting to the mass shootings. Sheriff Michael Zurlo from the Saratoga County Sheriff’s Office told News10, “We continue to be vigilant and we are always ready. We will work closely with our federal partners and continue to educate the public with active shooter trainings throughout the county.”
The Albany County Sheriff, Craig Apple, also added in light of the events in El Paso and Dayton, that if you are not trained in active shooter awareness, you should be.