Emergency Preparedness

NFPA Addresses Active Shooter/Hostile Event Preparedness and Response

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) is fast-tracking the development of a new standard for active shooter situations. Expectations are that the new standard will be ready this coming spring.

First responders

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A team of experts at the NFPA is speeding up the process to develop NFPA 3000, Standard for Preparedness and Response to Active Shooter and/or Hostile Events. The NFPA 3000 standard is being developed by a 46-member technical committee, which features representatives from law enforcement, fire, EMS, federal agencies, healthcare professionals, universities, and private security.

The Technical Committee is chaired by Richard Serino, recently retired COO of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), former Chief of Boston EMS, and current faculty member at Harvard University. He is joined by representatives from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Department of Justice (DOJ), Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), International Association of Police Chiefs (IACP), International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC), National Association of EMTs (NAEMT), International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF), EMS Labor Alliance, hospital officials, facility managers, private security authorities, university personnel, and others.

The purpose of NFPA 3000 is to identify the minimum program elements necessary for organizing, managing, and sustaining an active shooter and/or hostile event response program and to reduce or eliminate the risks, effect, and impact on an organization or community affected by these events.

According to NFPA President Jim Pauley, far too many incidents in recent years are prompting the need for a new active shooter standard. Among the list of attacks are Las Vegas; Orlando; London; Paris; San Bernardino; Boston; Sandy Hook; Fort Hood; Virginia Tech; Charleston; Washington, D.C.; and Sutherland Springs.

“These tragedies highlight a need for first responders, emergency personnel, facility managers, hospital officials, and community members to have information when terror attacks occur,” said Pauley.

NFPA 3000 will give authorities a resource to reference in the event of a terror or active shooter incident and addresses:

  • Risk assessment
  • Planning
  • Resource management
  • Organizational deployment
  • Incident management
  • Facility readiness
  • Finance
  • Communications
  • Competencies for law enforcement
  • Competencies for fire and EMS
  • Personal protective equipment
  • Training
  • Community education
  • Information sharing
  • Readiness of receiving hospitals
  • Recovery

NFPA 3000—Standard for Preparedness and Response to Active Shooter and/or Hostile Events Scope

This standard provides the minimum criteria for the level of competence required for responders organizing, managing, and sustaining an active shooter and/or hostile event preparedness and response program based on the authority having jurisdiction’s (AHJ) function and assessed level of risk.

A review of the laws, regulations, consensus standards, and guidance documents in addition to guidance for risk assessment, training materials, active shooter response planning, resource management, staffing, training, financial management, program influences, medical treatment modalities, resiliency, recovery, and developing relationships are covered in this standard.

This standard applies to any community, AHJ, facility, and member of any organization who responds to or prepares for active shooter and/or hostile events.

The standard is currently open for input from the public until February 23. The Technical Committee plans to meet in March and hopes to have the provisional standard ready by April.