Lockdown Vs Lockout
- What's the Difference?

Understand the difference

Lockdown vs Lockout explained

Some people and organizations use the terms “Lockout” and “Lockdown” interchangeably. However, while they may seem similar, there are some key differences. Let’s explore the difference between lockdown vs lockout!


lockdown is a situation where occupants lock themselves inside the rooms of a building. Occupants close and lock doors, deploy door barricades, and hide from view. A lockdown normally occurs if a dangerous, threatening person is physically inside the building. 

Not every lockdown is because of an active shooter. Lockdowns also occur if there is a dangerous person in the area. They also happen if there are dangerous or illegal activities happening inside the building. 

 A lockdown using The Lockout Smart Boot System occurs within seconds of initiation.  The lockdown alert is broadcast throughout the whole building, prompting occupants to take immediate action.


lockout is a situation where occupants secure the exterior of a building. During a lockout, all occupants that are outside the building move inside for safety. A lockout is usually in response to a dangerous situation nearby in which building administrators or local law-enforcement believe it is not safe to be outside the building. 

Normal activities can often resume within the building. However, until authorities give the all-clear, occupants should stand ready for a potential lockdown. 

We call a lockout in The Lockout Smart Boot System “secure mode” to avoid confusion between the terms “lockdown” and “lockout”.

Confusing Terms

Still confused about the difference between lockout vs lockdown? Let’s break it down a little further!

During a lockdown, occupants barricade and lock interior doors. Think of it from the perspective of yourself inside a building. If you are on “lockdown”, you are “locked down” inside the building.

During a lockout, occupants barricade and/or lock exterior doors. Once again, think of it from the perspective of yourself in the building. You are  “locking out” anyone outside attempting to enter.

Lockdown vs Lockout: Which Doors Are Secured?

During a lockout, occupants lock exterior doors and keep interior doors open and unlocked. Usually, lockdowns are triggered because a threat is already inside the building, so attempting to lock exterior doors may be impossible, or may be counter-productive as law enforcement and first-responders may need to enter the building to apprehend the suspect or help those inside. Door barricades typically aren’t used on entry doors.

Quickly Secure Your Doors

For a door barricade to be useful, it must have the ability to be deployed quickly and easily. Remember: time is precious in a lockdown situation! 

“The Boot”, our door barricade device, is precisely designed for emergency situations. People of all ages and abilities can deploy it with ease and speed. 

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