Active Shooter or Hostage Situation

Active Shooter
Members of the University community should be aware of the threat and be familiar with procedures that can help them survive an active shooter event.

You may be alerted to the presence of an armed hostile intruder or an active shooter on the UST campus by directly observing the event yourself, being informed by other persons in the area or through the University’s alert system.

An armed hostile intruder or active shooter could be encountered outdoors on the campus grounds or inside a University facility. Your emergency protective actions will depend upon your location and your proximity to the suspect. 

Call the University Police Department at 713-525-3888 or 9-1-1, and be prepared to give the following information concerning the incident:
  • Your exact location (building, floor, room number)
  • Specific location and direction of the assailant(s)
  • Number of assailant(s)
  • Sex, race and age of assailant(s)
  • Clothing color and style
  • Number injured, types of injuries
Run – if there is an accessible escape path, attempt to evacuate the premises.
Be sure to:
  • Have an escape route and plan in mind
  • Evacuate regardless of whether others agree to follow
  • Leave your belongings behind
  • Help others escape, if possible
  • Once outside, prevent individuals from entering an area where the active shooter may be
  • Keep your hands visible
  • Follow the instructions of any police officers
  • Do not attempt to move wounded people
  • Call UST Police (713) 525-3888 or 9-1-1 when you are safe
Hide – if evacuation is not possible, find a place to hide where the active shooter is less likely to find you.
Your hiding place should:
  • Be out of the active shooter’s view
  • Provide protection if shots are fired in your direction (i.e., an office with a closed and locked door)
  • Not trap you or restrict your options for movement

To prevent an active shooter from entering your hiding place:

  • Lock the door
  • Blockade the door with heavy furniture

If the active shooter is nearby:

  • Lock the door
  • Silence your cell phone and/or pager
  • Turn off any source of noise (i.e., radios, televisions)
  • Hide behind large items (i.e., cabinets, desks)
  • Remain quiet

If evacuation and hiding out are not possible:

  • Remain calm
  • Dial 9-1-1, if possible, to alert police to the active shooter’s location
  • If you cannot speak, leave the line open and allow the dispatcher to listen

If there is another way out of the building (for example window or other door), attempt to evacuate only if you can do it safely.

  • Call USTPD 713-525-3888 or 9-1-1 when you are safe. 
Fight – As a last resort, and only when your life is in imminent danger, attempt to disrupt and/or incapacitate the active shooter by:
  • Attempt to incapacitate the shooter
  • Acting as aggressively as possible against him/her
  • Throwing items and improvising weapons
  • Yelling
  • Committing to your actions
  • Call USTPD 713-525-3888 or 9-1-1 when you are safe.
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University of St. Thomas
3800 Montrose
Houston, TX 770066-4626
Phone: 713-525-3888
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3800 Montrose
Houston, Texas 77006-4626

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