When faced with an active deadly threat, preparation may be the best chance of survival. A new video released by the Vancouver Police Department aims to get people thinking about what they might do if the unthinkable ever happens.

The eight-minute-long video walks the viewer through a series of likely scenarios involving an active shooter in an office building, offering survival tips along the way. Viewers are encouraged to act quickly, and look for a safe way to escape. If that is impossible, they are advised to hide and prepare to fight. Ultimately, they may have to fight and defend themselves.

“Active deadly threats are rare in Canada, but they do happen,” says Chief Constable Adam Palmer. “The threat could be a gun, a knife, or a vehicle. It takes time for first responders to arrive, and your safety may be in your hands.”

How can someone possibly prepare for something like this in advance? Awareness is vital: know where all the exits are and how to lock or secure an office, meeting room, or building floor. A realistic safety plan should be in place and practiced. Experts also advise creating a crisis response package for first responders just off-site, including building maps, an up-to-date employee roster, keys, pass cards, floor plans and contact numbers.

“Our officers train and are prepared — your preparation could be key to surviving an incident like this,” says Chief Palmer. “Escape if you can, hide if you can’t, fight if you must.”

The video was funded by the Vancouver Police Foundation, and created with input from E-Comm, BC Emergency Health Services, and Vancouver Fire and Rescue.