How to Break Up A Fight

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Intervening alone is dangerous

Remove the Audience

Onlookers fuel the fire.  The intensity of an altercation often parallels the intensity of the bystanders.  Remove them as quickly as possible.

Avoid Stepping Between the Combatants

This puts you in a vulnerable position and the combatants aggression can quickly shift to you.

Use a Distraction

A distraction (loud noise, flickering of lights, etc.) can be enough to break the intensity of the aggression long enough to give you an edge.

Separate the Combatants

As soon as possible, break visual contact between the combatants.  As long as they can see one another, their hostility will likely continue.

The above material was provided and copyrighted 1995 by the National Crisis Prevention Institute


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