AlerT Active Shooter Defense Training vs. CRASE
We are sometimes asked how AlerT (Assess, lockdown, evade, resist, Tell) is different from the Civilian Response to Active Shooter Events (CRASE) class.
What is CRASE?
CRASE was developed in 2004, through a partnership between Texas State University and their local law enforcement. The training is founded upon three key elements: Avoid, Deny, Defend (ADD); which mimics Homeland Security Run, Hide, Fight. CRASE attempts to differentiate itself from Run, Hide, Fight by emphasizing the ineffectiveness of the “hide” mentality.
AlerT Active Shooter Response training also avoids using the term “hide”; however, CRASE’s use of the term “Deny” is just as problematic, if not more so.
Why the term “Deny” is problematic in an Active-Shooter Event
While CRASE intends that deny being used in the context of preventing access, “deny” is a powerful word; especially when dealing with an active-shooter type attack. Studies have shown it is more common for people to deny an emergency is happening than it is for them to panic. This is detailed in the excellent book “The Unthinkable” by Amanda Ripley. She points out that in an emergency, people often first deny the danger. For instance, the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s final report on the collapse of the World Trade Center towers points out that, after impact, people on the lower levels waited an average of one to three minutes before starting their evacuation.
How AlerT Training Mitigates the Dangers of Normalcy Bias
In AlerT training, we emphasize Situational Awareness and to avoid Normalcy Bias. Normalcy Bias is to deny and disbelieve imminent danger because these circumstances are not normal. When training people how to respond to an active-shooter type attack: words matter. Avoid words like deny.
Situational awareness is reinforced throughout AlerT training with things like the OODA loop decision-making cycle, Jeff Cooper’s Color Codes, and our AlerT training cards.
Be AlerT – Fight Normalcy Bias
As unfortunate as they are, emergencies are a possibility. AlerT training was developed as an all-hazards solution – accounting for all phases of preparedness: prevention through response.