Last week it happened at the Washington Navy Yard. This week, it happened at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.
At each federal facility, someone thought they heard a gunshot – and the resulting response by police departments, federal and local, disrupted business there for the rest of the day.
Despite the inconvenience, officials say, both cases unfolded just the way they should have: Someone saw something and said something.
Polly Hanson, the Chief of Police for Amtrak, told News4's Adam Tuss that a proper security response is always necessary.
"I think most instances were good examples of a very thorough response," Hanson said. "It was a huge opportunity for law enforcement to come together and show the community that we can be responsive when they articulate concerns."
Hanson said Amtrak wants its riders to know they can call on law enforcement whenever they are unsure about their safety.
With the immediacy of texting, Amtrak riders are encouraged to text APD11 (27311) if they ever see any suspicious behavior.
"We want you to communicate with us. We want to know what concerns you, because we want to have the opportunity to respond and get back to you," Hanson said.