Active shooter scenario: How your cell phone could save your life

Jill P’Poole is a nursing student at West Kentucky Community and Technical College, but on Wednesday, she was an actress playing a victim in an active shooter drill on campus.

"I started shaking like it was real," says P’Poole.

If it wasn’t a drill, P’Poole would get a text from the school.

"I’m always looking at my phone," says P’Poole. "It’s the first thing I look at when I get up in the morning. So, if it’s on there, you know, ‘There’s an active shooter. Don’t come to school,’ I’m going to stay far away from here."

It’s called SNAP: Safety Notification Alert Process. If there’s a crisis on campus, students and staff will get a text, an email and a call.

Paducah Police Training Officer Scotty Davis says a simple alert could save many lives if this was a real situation.

"If they’re at the Anderson Building and something happens, then over here at the gym they know to go into lockdown," says Davis.

In Wednesday’s drill, the shooter walked down the hall and started shooting once he got into financial aid. But what do you do if you’re in a classroom full of people and someone opens fire? David Wallace, manager of security and safety at WKCTC, says you might have to fight. He says grab textbooks, a desk, anything you can use to protect yourself.

"There would be little opportunity for flight," says Wallace. "The only chance you have is to fight."

Wallace says the alert is only available to WKCTC students and staff who register for SNAP on the college’s website.

Murray State University and Southern Illinois University also have similar alert systems for students and faculty.

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