Few situations in military or civilian life are more dangerous or harrowing than being in the
presence of an active shooter. An active shooter, Homeland Security says, “is an individual
actively engaged in killing or attempting to kill people in a confined and populated area.”
Unfortunately, active shooters are found far too often in both combat and civilian life. But a team
of civilian employees at the Aviation Center of Excellence at Fort Rucker, Alabama, have
developed an application that will help military members and civilians alike to survive, the Army
said recently in an announcement.
The Army says the phone app will have dual functions: education and as a means of rapid
connection to emergency response professionals. In the case of civilian contractors near or on a
military base overseas, that might well mean a military response, a response by civilian security
personnel or both.
One of the important factors the app’s developers took into consideration was the inordinate
levels of stress a person experiences when in an active-shooter, life-or-death situation. So the app
is as user-friendly as developers could make it.
Once it is opened on a person’s phone, one tap can access an emergency dialer. The user is then
given instructions on how to deal with their situation until responders arrive.
“We’re going to try to think for you,” a developer said. “Because there are situations where you
won’t have time to think.” When contractors sustain injuries, provisions of the Defense Base Act
can result in workers’ comp benefits.