Heavy Demand for WVA Workshops on Survival Techniques in Office Shootings


Few places take as aggressive an approach to teaching survival techniques in the case of office shootings as West Virginia, where the state Bureau of Risk and Insurance Management offers training to government agencies and private companies, reports the Los Angeles Times. “It’s not paranoia. It’s awareness,” said Sgt. Michael Lynch of the West Virginia State Police. “This is for the common person who is going to be at their workplace, who’s going to be at school, who’s going to be out shopping.”

Homicide was the fourth-leading cause of death in the workplace in 2011, the most recent year charted by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. That year, 458 people were killed at work, and firearms were used in 78 percent of the slayings. About 14 percent of office shootings end with someone other than law enforcement stopping the assailant. West Virginia has offered 14 workshops on the subject this year. “We see it as a public health issue, not just a law enforcement or security issue,” said Rahul Gupta of the Kanawha-Charleston Health Department, where a March training session was filled to capacity with 110 people.

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