The bombardment of Scarborough was a huge shock to the whole coast. No one expected the war to affect the British mainland. The attack on Scarborough was seen as an outrage. It was a full artillery assault on an undefended civilian town. It was the World War One equivalent of the London bombing in World War Two. In London the inhabitants started to use the Underground stations as shelter.
When Scarborough was bombarded they received letters from the Aberdeen Emergency Committee who wanted to devise a plan of action just in case their town were to be attacked in the same way. Aberdeen learnt the lessons from the Scarborough bombardment as most of the casualties occurred in the streets. Harry Smith, the borough engineer advised the Aberdeen Emergency Committee that in the event of a bombardment "all people to keep in their houses, as the majority of our wounded were running about the streets".
The following points were part of the City of Aberdeen emergency precautions in case of bombardment.
3. As shrapnel is especially dangerous to persons in the open, the citizens are advised not to go into the streets or open spaces, but to remain in their houses. If in the open, they should seek the shelter of the nearest substantial building. Wooden of other flimsy buildings or sheds offer practically no protection.
4. The safest places in a building are underground cellars or rooms, if they exist, or rooms on the lowest floor, and on the side of the buildings furthest from the source of the firing - that is, the sea front. In tenement houses with several families, especially if much exposed to the fire of the enemy, the occupants of the lowest floors will, no doubt, if desired, be willing to give temporary shelter to the occupants of the uppaer floors.
5. As shrapnel from a bursting shell is dispersed in all directions, and may enter windows on either side of the house away from the sea, it is advisable to sit opposite a window.
6. Persons employed in workshops and offices when the bombardment begins should endeavour to obtain shelter on the lines suggested for dwelling houses, and should not, unless necessary, rush into the streets.
7. If anyone has to proceed through the city during the bombardment he should, as a general rule, keep on the side of the street nearest to the sea. Drivers of vehicles, especially of heavy vehicles, may find it advisable to unyoke their horses in the streets in order to to reduce the danger from alarmed horses, and to facilitate shelter being more conveniently and quickly obtained for the horses and the drivers. Drivers otherwise should, so far is practicable, proceed directly to their stables, or take up sheltered position as, for example, in a street running parallel to the sea front.