What would you do if you were suddenly held hostage by a crazed gunman?
Would you panic? Would you begin to plead with the gunman to let you go? Would you wait for an opportunity to overpower the gunman?
Unfortunately the heroic acts you see in the movies rarely turn out like they do on the silver screen. The triple-whammy of adrenaline, panic, and lack of communication can cause the perpetrator to do things he or she hadn't planned on.
Several years ago one of our PA systems was used by heroes in a hostage situation. Here is what Daniel Sherwin Team Leader Crisis Negotiation Unit had to say:
"The Wireless Half Mile Hailer we purchased from you was used on October 4, 2006 to end a 14 hour standoff between a 56-year-old man holding a 4-year-old boy Hostage in Texas. The Hailer was deployed by SWAT teams next to the house of the standoff. I was able to communicate through the Hailer using the wireless microphone from 700 or more feet away.Communication is key in tense and emergency situations and it is imperative that your voice and message is communicated above the noise.
Negotiators tried for ten hours prior to the Hailer's deployment to get the suspect to answer a throw phone deployed in the house. It was only after we deployed the Half Mile Hailer did we get a response."
Only through using the Half-Mile Hailer did the Crisis Negotiation Unit find success in ending the standoff and bringing safety to the hostages.