ProtectUK publication date
If you are alerted to a firearms or weapons attack, stay calm, RUN or HIDE, only when it is safe TELL the police


  • Consider your safest options.
  • Escape if you can.
  • Is there a safe route? RUN, if not HIDE.
  • Can you get there without exposing yourself to greater danger?
  • Insist others leave with you, but don't let their indecision slow you down.
  • Leave belongings behind.


  • If you cannot RUN, then HIDE.
  • Find cover from gunfire.
  • If you can see the attacker, they may be able to see you.
  • Cover from view does not mean you are safe, bullets go through glass, brick, wood and metal.
  • Find cover from gunfire e.g. substantial brickwork/heavy reinforced walls.
  • Be aware of your exits.
  • Try not to get trapped.
  • Be quiet, silence your phone.
  • Lock/barricade yourself in.
  • Move away from the door.


  • Call 999 - What do the police need to know? If you cannot speak or make a noise listen to the instructions given to you by the call taker.
  • Location - Where are the suspects?
  • Direction - Where did you last see the suspects?
  • Descriptions – Describe the attacker, numbers, features, clothing, weapons etc.
  • Further information – Casualties, type of injury, building information, entrances, exits, hostages etc.
  • Stop other people entering the building if it is safe to do so.



  • Follow officers’ instructions.
  • Remain calm.
  • Can you move to a safer area?
  • Keep your hands in view.



  • Point guns at you.
  • Treat you firmly.
  • Question you.
  • Not be unable to distinguish you from the attacker.
  • Officers will evacuate you when it is safe to do so.

When it is safe give first aid: www.citizenaid.or

Documents title

Run Hide Tell

Evacuation and Lockdown Procedures

When considering evacuation and the security of ballot boxes it must be noted that the safety of all present is of paramount importance.

  • Designate specified personnel who will, in the event of an evacuation, be tasked with removing ballot boxes and ballot papers, marked electoral register for the polling station and the corresponding numbers list etc. Remember personal safety comes first.
  • Prepare a contingency plan for arrangements for receiving and protecting ballot boxes in case of evacuation.
  • Prepare a contingency plan to identify alternate means of access and egress to the counting stations in cases of emergency.
  • Identify a designated evacuation rendezvous point. Has a secondary venue for a polling station been identified should an evacuation of the primary location be required?


If you are required to evacuate or lockdown the venue - use your judgement

  • Stay calm.
  • Assess the situation, the type of incident, its location, attackers and hazards.
  • Is the incident or device inside the venue or outside the venue?
  • Establish the location of the safest place.
  • If you evacuate take the safest route, do so in an orderly manner, insisting others go with you, but don't let their indecision slow you down.
  • If you lockdown, go to a safer area, secure all entrances and exits to the premises where possible.
  • Communicate to all present what is happening and advise as to the most appropriate action.
  • Stay out of sight and away from windows.
  • Place your phone on silent, lock yourself in a room if possible.


Follow the RUN HIDE TELL principles – Inform the police, call 999

Run Hide Tell
Terrorist threat
Weapons of Terrorism