What to do in an Active Armed Offender incident

Australia’s current National Terrorism Threat Level sits at POSSIBLE which indicates individuals or groups have developed both an intent and capability to conduct a terrorist attack in Australia.

Current threat assessments reaffirm the trend towards low-capability attacks conducted by lone actors or small groups which present a significant challenge for security and law-enforcement agencies, such as the WA Police Force. These attacks are aimed at people rather than infrastructure and against relatively soft targets and they can occur with little or no planning, or intelligence forewarning.

While the term ‘extremist’ is very topical at this time, particularly in the media, it’s important to realise not all active armed offender incidents are motivated by extremism or perpetrated by religious or ideologically-focused individuals. An active armed offender incident can also include an individual with a serious fixation and/or a serious mental health issue or it could be motivated by hatred, revenge or criminal intent.

An armed offender who is actively engaged in killing or attempting to kill people, and who demonstrated their intention to continue to do so while having access to additional potential victims

Recent attacks highlight the majority of active armed offender incidents occur at places that are considered soft targets and places of mass gatherings such as public transport hubs, sporting arenas, entertainment precincts, schools and shopping malls.

The main objective of WA Police Force officers when responding to an active armed offender incident is to save lives and prevent further loss of life or injuries. WA Police Force officers must reduce or suppress the threat posed by the active armed offender as quickly as possible. Traditional cordon, contain and negotiate strategies are unlikely to be effective in reducing the time an offender has to achieve their desired outcomes, or limit their freedom of movement.

If any person finds themselves involved in an active armed offender incident, the best and recommended advice offered by the WA Police Force is to call Triple Zero (000) and Escape Hide Tell.