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Tampa Police training businesses and their employees to survive active shooter situations

Posted at 2:53 AM, Jun 06, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-06 06:30:41-04

It's happening more often, and talking about it is tough.

"She was in the bathroom, and she heard a bang, when she came out she saw one person on the floor and she was just hysterically crying," said one woman, describing what her sister saw when a man opened fire, killing several employees in this Orlando RV accessories store Monday morning.

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Roughly 700 people are killed at work each year. Tampa Police is hoping to change that statistic with free training.

"What options do I have to simply get out of this area? In this case I have a doorway here and I have another door way over here," said Corporal Jared Douds, with the Tampa Police department, as he pointed out the exits in the room.

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Next, Douds says run and if you can, help others too. Once your safe dial 911.

If you're stuck inside, the next step is to barricade the room you're in and hide. He says this will either stop the shooter or at least slow them down for what's next, a fight, by grabbing anything in the room and turning it into a weapon.

"You've got something that is ceramic, it's got weight to it, you've got the chairs themselves with some metal to them and most of the time public buildings typically have fire extinguishers. Spray them with the white stuff, hit them with the red thing," said Douds, showing ABC Action news typical office supplies and furniture that will work as a weapon.

The FBI lists warning signs for employees to look out for. It says typically, this type of violence doesn't happen at random. It says there are usually warning signs like making threats, aggressive outbursts, diminished work performance or sadness.

You can help prevent workplace violence by reporting and documenting all incidents to human resources, recognizing suspicious or new behavior from your co-workers, or calling police if you feel you or your co-workers are in danger.

Tampa Police says it would rather respond to a false alarm than not, and respond to tragedy afterwards. Contact the department if you'd like officers to come out and train your employees. It must be a business with at least 20 employees.