Active Attacker


At Humber College and the University of Guelph-Humber, we take the safety of our community very seriously. An active threat is a highly unlikely situation, but it is important that every one of us knows what to do to stay safe should it ever occur. Humber’s response to a potential active threat is RUN-HIDE-DEFEND. Here’s what you need to know.

Run Hide Defend gives you options and the knowledge that you can protect and defend yourself. The response is pretty straight forward, and you just have to remember three short words:





  • Stop what you’re doing and quickly assess the situation
  • If you can get out of the building safely, then do so - RUN out of the building until you are safe
  • Then call 911 and tell them what’s going on


  • If you can’t RUN, then find a place to HIDE – go to the nearest secured space such as a small interior room
  • Close doors and windows and close blinds or curtains in the room
  • Lock the doors if possible. Barricade the doors use desks, tables, cabinets to block door; wrap belt or cord around handles or hydraulic hinges – whatever you have in the room, use)
  • Sit or lie on the floor or crouch behind or under desks, use furniture to block you from sight
  • Do not huddle in one spot or large group…spread out
  • If the lights in the room can be turned off - turn them off
  • Turn off computers, silence cell phones, radios, or any device that may indicate the room is occupied
  • Stay away from doors and try to keep out of the line of sight of windows (use the designated hard corners)
  • Your goal is to make the room look unoccupied and prevent access for the attacker



  • As a last resort, you may have to DEFEND yourself if the attacker comes into your space
  • Only you can decide if you are going to defend yourself
  • If you decide to defend – you must commit to the actions and be aggressive, be loud and be committed. If several people commit to defend, you have a good chance of overwhelming the attacker
  • Try to disorient and incapacitate the attacker
  • Use any materials or equipment in the room, e.g. chairs, books, backpacks, purses, fire extinguishers, water bottles, etc.
  • Throw them at the attacker – DO NOT HOLD BACK
  • Keep moving and fighting until the attacker is incapacitated
  • Kick or slide the gun or other weapons away – DO NOT pick them up
  • Once you have the attacker down – DO NOT stop and DO NOT let them up
  • Have someone call 911 to tell them where you are and that you have the attacker

This is not a fair fight – it is a fight for your life!

This is a highly unlikely situation, but it is important for all of us to know what to do to protect ourselves should this situation ever occur.

You can also watch the York Regional Police Run Hide Defend video for more information -

To take Humber’s online active attacker training, click here.

If you would like more information, or for information on Run Hide Defend training sessions, please contact Kathy Branton, Manager, Business Continuity & Emergency Management via email at