Hostage Situation

Be Prepared to Report

Anyone observing a situation where a person is being held against their will should call ext. 5911 or 978-837-5911 immediately and be prepared to provide as much of the information listed below as possible:

  • Location of the incident.
  • Identification/description of the person(s) involved (hostage taker and hostages).
  • Description of events.
  • Whether or not the hostage taker(s) are armed.
  • Number and types of weapons. 

You may be directed to implement emergency lockdown procedures in a hostage situation. Do not attempt to intercede in a hostage situation. You may jeopardize your safety or that of the hostage.

If taken hostage, remember that the captor may be emotionally unbalanced. In general, however, a captor does not want to harm persons being held hostage, so patience will be your greatest asset. 

When in a hostage situation, following the guidelines listed below will ensure the greatest amount of safety to all involved:

  • Remain alert and be observant. Upon your release, the information you are able to provide law enforcement officers may be critical.
  • Avoid drastic or sudden actions as well as any behavior that could further endanger you.
  • Follow the instructions of the captor.
  • Do not speak to the captor unless spoken to; however, tell the captor if you or anyone else needs medication, first aid or restroom privileges.
  • Do not talk down to the captor.
  • Avoid appearing hostile.
  • Do not stare at the captor.
  • Avoid speculation.


On campus
Ext. 5911 (or use RAVE Guardian for instant,
silent text communication)

Off campus