Friday, April 19, 2013

The Boston Bombers and the Decline of al-Qaeda

From Romesh Ratnesar in Businessweek:
Acts of terrorism against the U.S. are less likely to be committed by a global enterprise like al-Qaeda than by small numbers of “self-radicalized” domestic jihadists, far-right hate groups, anarchists, and radical environmentalists. Because they’re more diffuse, these potential perpetrators are also harder to identify and stop. “We know what to do with al-Qaeda,” says Rick “Ozzie” Nelson, a senior associate in the Homeland Security and Counterterrorism Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. “We understand this enemy. What we don’t understand nearly as well is what to do when Americans embrace a radical ideology that might lead them to commit violence.”
The landscape of terror is changing, and the al-Qaeda model of spectacular attacks against things - like buildings, battleships, and national iconshas changed to today's lone (or twin) wolf style attacks on people. They adopt a more Hamas-like mindset, and attack public gatherings or crowded places. Whether it is shooting at Fort Hood soldiers; dropping off a backpack bomb at a parade, or parking a car bomb in Times Square;  the idea is not to disrupt the system - but rather to kill or maim as many as possible - and thereby disrupt our daily life.

While the US may have been spared any more 9/11s, the Boston Marathon bombing is a wake-up call for us. We have to come to grips with the fact that the FBI will not be able to infiltrate every plot, not every conversation can be monitored, and we cannot count on every homemade bomb to fizzle out. We should also understand that the threats are increasingly coming not from outside our borders, but within - from grassroots and radicalized sources. The enemy has changed his face and his tactics; it is past time for us to adapt and change with them.

Boston Bombers are Brothers on the Run

Early reports have then in the US since 2007 which would put these kids at around 13 & 14 when they came over.  Most of what we have seen so far would be things they could have gotten from watching TV and from the Internet.  I see nothing that shows a lot of training.

The one older boy was into boxing, in fact took off school to go into boxing.

Pro's would have made the Canadian border in the time authorities are looking for them.

The older Brother Tamerlan Tsarnaev and the one still being sought is Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. The younger went to a local High School and was known as Johar.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

DHS Guidance for Response to Ricin Delivered by Mail DHS provided this guidance on Ricin , back in 2004

Information Bulletin
Title: Guidance for Response to Ricin Delivered by Mail
Date: February 9, 2004

Information Bulletin
Title: Guidance for Response to Ricin Delivered by Mail
Date: February 9, 2004

The widest dissemination of this material is encouraged and authorized.
DHS intends to update this Bulletin should it receive additional relevant information, including information provided to it by the recipients. Based on this notification, no change to the Homeland Security Advisory System (HSAS) level is anticipated; the current HSAS level is YELLOW.
This is a joint DHS and FBI Information Bulletin. DHS Information Bulletins communicate issues that pertain to the critical national infrastructure and are for informational purposes only.
While DHS possesses no information indicating specific terrorist targeting of U.S. critical infrastructures through the delivery by mail of the toxin ricin, such targeting would be consistent with certain terrorists’ stated objectives to disrupt and undermine vital economic interests in this country.
On the afternoon of February 2, 2004, Senate staff observed gray granular powder on an automated mail opening system. Preliminary field tests indicated the possible presence of a biological toxin. Samples of the material were tested overnight at a government laboratory and results indicated the presence of ricin. The three Senate Office Buildings were closed and secured on February 3rd. The samples were forwarded to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, Georgia and on February 4th three out of the four samples tested positive. At this time no threat letter has been identified and no threat has been received.
Past incidents involving the presence of ricin have occurred in the United Sates and the United Kingdom. On October 15, 2003, a postal worker discovered a business-size envelope containing the toxin ricin in a mail distribution facility in Greenville, South Carolina. The letter, which was addressed to the U.S. Department of Transportation, did not pass through the postal system. In January 2003, law enforcement agencies in the United Kingdom searched several locations in London as part of an ongoing counterterrorism investigation and found small amounts of ricin, as well as equipment that could be used in its production. In April 1991, several members of a domestic extremist group in Minnesota extracted ricin from castor beans and discussed using it against federal law enforcement officers. The amount of ricin produced could have killed more than 100 people if effectively delivered.
Background on Ricin
  1. Ricin is a poison that can be made from the waste (mash) left over from processing castor beans. Ricin can be made in the form of an off-white powder, a mist, or a pellet or it can be dissolved in water or weak acid. It would take a deliberate act to make Ricin and use it to poison people. Ricin is one of several toxins that exert toxicity by inhibiting protein synthesis. Ricin can enter the body through inhalation, ingestion, abraded (non-intact) skin, mucosal membranes (e.g., eyes and nose), and injection. Ricin poisoning is not contagious, and person-to-person transmission does not occur.
Exposure to ricin may occur through:
  • Inhalation, skin, or eye contact: as an aerosol, powder, or dust
  • Ingestion: through contamination of food, water, or consumer products
  • Injection: directly through the skin
Ricin toxicity and lethality can vary by dose and route of exposure. In animal studies, inhalation and intravenous injection have been shown as the most lethal routes. The lethal dose for humans, by inhalation or injection, is estimated to be 5 - 10 mg/kg. Because the ricin protein is large, it is not well absorbed orally or through the skin.
To date ricin poisonings have only occurred in humans after ingestion or injection. Ricin is considered to be a much more potent toxin when inhaled or injected compared with other routes of exposure, however ricin would need to be dispersed in particles smaller than 5 microns to be used as an effective weapon via inhalation. It is technologically difficult to produce ricin particles of this size and purity.
  1. For more information about ricin go to:
Suggested Actions for Mail Room, Postal and Shipping Facility Operators
Two categories of actions are necessary1: 1) Identifying and assessing biological (including ricin) threats; 2) Managing biological threats that appear credible.
1. Identifying and Assessing Biological Threats
Several commercial handheld or test-strip ricin detection devices are available; however the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have stated that the performance of these assays is unknown. While many of these tests indicate a high false positive, they may be more useful in ruling out the presence of ricin. These test kits should only be used by trained and certified hazardous materials professionals. If such testing is deemed necessary, personnel should preserve original evidence for forensic analysis. Automated, continuously monitoring bio-detection systems are available commercially; however they may be cost-prohibitive for many companies.
Measures that can be taken without installing special detection equipment are the same for most biological threats and are organized according to whether the mail is opened or unopened and whether it contains a written threat or an unidentified container:
Opened mail that is leaking a suspicious liquid or powder, or mail that has a suspicious odor: If you open a letter or package and see an unknown material, or if an unknown material is leaking from the mail as a liquid, powder, or odor, do not try to clean it up or otherwise disturb it. Set the mail down on a stable surface and call the first responder designated to respond to this type of threat, e.g., the HAZMAT team at the local fire and rescue department.
Opened mail that contains a written threat: If anyone in the organization opens a letter or package with or without powder and discovers a written threat, such as a note that says “You have been contaminated with ricin,” put the package or letter down on a stable surface and call the first responder designated to deal with this type of threat. The mail center supervisor or the first responder must ensure that local law enforcement authorities and the FBI local field office are notified in either of these events.
Unopened mail: Whenever a mail center worker identifies an unopened package or letter as “suspicious”, a mail center supervisor or specially trained employee should examine the mail piece to confirm that it meets the “suspicious” criteria established for the location (e.g., it is covered with powder or appears saturated from the inside). If confirmed, do not open it. A supervisor or designated mail center worker who is trained to confirm the identification must be available during all working hours.
Next, determine if the mail piece is addressed to a person who actually works in the facility. If so, and if the addressee can be located in a reasonable period of time, contact the addressee and ask him or her to identify the package. If the addressee recognizes the package and is certain it is not threatening, deliver it. If the addressee does not recognize the package, or if you cannot locate the addressee, attempt to contact the individual listed on the return address to verify the contents of the package. If you successfully contact the sender of the package, ask them to provide a description of the contents, intended addressee, and the reason it was mailed to your location. Provide this information to the addressee for further verification.
If the addressee does not recognize the package, or if you cannot locate the addressee, do not open it. The supervisor or designated mail center worker should call the previously designated first responder. This first responder will be responsible for opening the package in a controlled environment and following the appropriate protocol for evaluation of the threat. A “controlled environment” may be a glove box, hood with negative airflow and HEPA filters on the exhaust airflow, or a similar device. When identifying the first responder who will open suspicious letters or packages, make sure they have a controlled environment available.
Mail that contains an unidentified secondary container: If x-ray inspection shows a secondary container that may contain an unknown material, or if you open a letter or package and discover such a container, do not open or otherwise disturb the secondary container. Treat the secondary container as suspicious, unopened mail. As above, first call the addressee and see if they can identify the container. If he or she cannot be located, then call in the first responder designated to open suspicious mail.
2. Managing Biological Threats That Appear Credible
In the event that a trained first responder, after reviewing the situation, determines that a possible biological hazard may actually be present (i.e., a biological agent may have been released into the workplace, or a biological agent may be present in a package or envelope that has been opened), the first responder should take the following steps or ensure that these activities are performed where appropriate:
  • Turn off the ventilation system, fans or window air conditioners for the area of potential release.
  • Turn off any high-speed mail processing equipment that may have handled the suspicious mail piece.
  • Make sure that the suspicious substance is not disturbed by covering it
  • Keep everyone out of any room(s) that may have been contaminated.
In addition, the first responder should immediately call local law enforcement authorities and the FBI Field Office and ask to speak to the Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) coordinator. The FBI website is The FBI WMD coordinator will respond to the scene and will, in conjunction with other federal, state, local, and internal experts, conduct a threat assessment and, in conjunction with public health officials, direct other actions to protect employees and the general public.
Suggested Actions for First Responders
Ricin should only be handled by trained and certified hazardous materials professionals. Hazardous Materials Teams should be aware that ricin mostly presents a particulate inhalation or splash hazard depending on the preparation of the material. Personal protective equipment (PPE) for first responders, including those who are decontaminating victims at the scene, is generally determined by the Incident Commander based on the mechanism of dispersal and whether dispersal is continuing. Preventing droplets from contacting broken skin or mucosal membranes (e.g., the mouth or eyes) is important when decontaminating someone, but airborne dispersal of ricin during decontamination is an unlikely hazard. PPE can consist of a chemical-resistant suit with gloves, air purifying respirator or self-contained breathing apparatus and eye/face protection. Sampling, seizure, or transportation of ricin should be completed only under the authority of or in coordination with law enforcement.
Personnel who may have been exposed to ricin should wash the effected area vigorously with soap and water. Equipment and supplies can be decontaminated with a weak (0.5 percent) hypochlorite solution (bleach) and/or soap and water.
Healthcare providers should report suspected or known cases of ricin poisoning immediately to the regional poison control center (telephone, 1-800-222-1222) and to local or state public health agencies, which will report cases to the CDC, and other federal agencies including the DHS.
DHS encourages recipients of this Information Bulletin to report information concerning suspicious or criminal activity to local law enforcement, local FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force or the Homeland Security Operations Center (HSOC). The HSOC may be contacted at: Phone: (202) 282-8101 or by email at
1 Adapted from GSA Policy Advisory: National Guidelines for Assessing and Managing Biological Threats in Federal Mail Facilities; December 29, 2003

CTI is getting a lot of requests for information on the ricin biological attack problem

CTI is getting a lot of requests for information on the ricin biological attack problem. The following is a short paper not tailored to any specific airport, port, or train station on possible procedures for countering or mitigating the threat.

The scare from the London find is real, but should be put in perspective. Ricin is a by-product of castor beans. Castor Oil, which has a portion of the ricin byproduct in it most of the time, is used for everything from soap to an industrial lubricant for machines. Trace amounts of ricin can be found in various products, including leather, which is often conditioned with a castor oil-based process, to soap. South Africa does produce castor beans and process them into different byproducts. In fact a recent study at the University of Virginia shows that the South African castor bean has one of the highest levels of ricin in it. Therefore, if any of the people arrested in London worked near or with a castor bean byproduct, there is a good chance they would have trace amounts of ricin on or around them.

It should be noted that a strain of castor bean from Pakistan has been found to have the highest level of ricin, with strains of beans from Afghanistan, Iran, India, and South Africa following behind. It also should be noted that in the last three years the US has increased its own castor bean production while slowing down imports of castor beans from other countries. This slowing of US castor bean imports is causing financial hardships in some of these developing countries.

The greatest concentrations of ricin are generally found in the meal or hulls left over from the making of castor oil, which means that it can be developed from the leftovers of a castor oil plant. If the ricin is of a high enough content, one bean chewed as it is eaten can kill a person. This is also true of the Rosary Pea, which has a protein toxin called abrin and a glycoside called abric acid. The symptoms are close to ricin, but the bean from the plant is even more toxic than ricin. This plant grows naturally in tropical climates and well established in certain areas of southern Florida.

A medical protocol for ricin is attached.

If a possible victim is discovered in a transportation facility it should be determined if the victim is an arriving passenger or departing passenger. Regardless, since the symptomatic period is usually at minimum one hour to as many as 15 days the toxin is most likely from another location. However, a procedure could be established to determine where the person came from and notify the authorities in that area to look out for other possible victims. If the possible victim is an originating passenger from the location in question, notifications should be made to local medical facilities to look out for other possible victims.

If notified from another source that the facility has been identified as a possible source of the toxin, HAZMAT teams along with federal and local law enforcement would be dispatched to determine if the facility has been attacked.

Ricin can be be used to attack in a number of different ways. One is through contact with the toxin. A number of people in the US have been convicted for planning to put ricin mixed with a hand cream to enhance the toxins entry to the bloodstream on hand rails and doorknobs in public facilities. Ricin has also been injected into victims through small pellets fired from devices like altered umbrellas. In this case, the victim felt the injection but did not realize what it was until it was too late. Ricin can also be dispersed as an aerosol to mix with the air in the facility. Another method is to add it to a food or beverage for consumption. Determining what any victims had in common, such as entry into a particular facility or a food establishment they all had visited would be the most effective method of discovering the source.

Security awareness training is probably the only preventative measure to deal with this type of threat since the methods of detection are very site or area-specific and costly. Anyone behaving in a suspicious manner such as hanging around a food vendor, or possibly wearing gloves or a mask as they walk around a facility should be reported to authorities immediately.

Since the delivery of the toxin is very dangerous to the attacker, gloves, masks, or other items to limit the attackers exposure to the toxin are normally necessary. Unlike with other toxins, normally caregivers are not a significant risk unless there is an airborne attack via an aerosol delivery system. It’s important to remember that if the victim were showing signs of symptoms of the toxin, it would be very unlikely that the attack occurred at your facility.

If any additional information is required, please call CTI at 1-800-783-4284 or email us at

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Here is a picture of a trash can from the area of the Boston bombing

Using google earth a trash can was found in the area of where the actual first bombing occurred, this is not to say it was the one, if the reports of the bomb being in a trash can are true.  But for future mitigation, lets look at this one.

If you look at the makeup this trash can you can see that under the right conditions the can could provide a lot of flying metal shrapnel, not of the type reported though, these would be larger metal pieces like the width of one of the metal staves that make it up.  It is possible that some rivets and other small pieces would also be included, but I do not think nails or other ball bearing type objects would be sent flying.  In fact if this turns out to be a low explosion we would have seen most of this type of trash been still somewhat intact.  Even it nails or ball bearings had been in the bomb, the trash can make up would have sent most of them upwards into the air, not sideways into the people. 

On the other hand if a high explosive had been used a lot of the trash can would have gone away at a rapid speed, and we should have seen chunks of the metal staves in people, even in cars and buildings in the area.  Which would lead to this not being the trash can type used or the device was not in this trash can.

When we have trash cans in areas where bombers may be attracted to, we tend to use ones that have limited openings at the top to reduce the size of the objects that can be thrown in them.  If there is a true threat we would either get rid of the trash cans in the area, or invest in one's that are blast resistant.  By this I mean that tend not to fragment easily, and tend to vent blast pressure upwards, to include fragmentation.  These trash cans are quite expensive, many airport use them, but even there the cost is rather prohibitive for normal use.

Limiting the size of objects than can easily be put in the trash can is the better bet, and getting rid of trash cans from areas that attract bombers is even better.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Map of the Boston Marathon Explosions

From the New York Times
The first explosion occurred about 3 pm on the north side of Boylston Street, just before the bridge that marks the finish line.
The second explosion went off about 10 second later.
The two explosions were about 550 feet apart.

Explosions at Boston Marathon

The marathon has been suspended after two explosions were reported at the finish line. Nearly fifty people are reportedly injured, and there are twelve of fatalities as well. First responders are on the scene and the city has implemented emergency procedures.

Initial reports second blast came from a trash can, & often used hiding place for explosive devices. The Boston bomb squad is on the scene as reports come in of suspicious devices. A third device was fiound at the JFK library. When people see something, they are saying something, and that's a good thing. Cities from Boston to DC, New York to San Franciosco are now on a heightened alert level.

This picture was captured at the moment of the first explosion. Law enforcement is now saying is was a homemade bomb that was the preliminary cause. The NY Post is reporting that "authorities have a identified a suspect, who is currently being guarded in a Boston hospital with shrapnel wounds." CBS news is reporting that Boston police have surveillance video of someone bringing multiple backpacks to blast site.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

In Mass Attacks, Public Now Advised to Take Action - Be part of your own security

In Mass Attacks, Public Now Advised to Take Action -

This has always been true, but now Police and Government Agencies are also promoting that people need to be actively involved in their own security.  It does not mean to become a vigilante, it can mean to have a weapon to defend your self at least at home.  But even if you have a weapon, your first moves should be to avoid a situation where you may get hurt.  Professional Police Officers, are often injured by criminals that are far less trained than they.

Awareness of what is going on around you is the key factor for our safety, this takes on everything from knowing what threats are out there that could effect us, to knowing how secure our home, office, and vehicles are, to learning to stay calm, breathe deeply,and see all that is moving around us.

Threats, are the biggest problem, if a crazy person gets out of a car with a weapon and walks into a restaurant we are sitting at, we really have no control of the person's actions, nor know in advance what may happen.  But remember threats are just one part of the equation.

Awareness, is the key part of the equation, can we be aware of ourselves and our surroundings enough to provide even a second of warning that things are not going right here.  I tweet out a lot that you always want a straight line or path to get out of a situation.  When something starts to happen, we want to be moving out of the danger zone, even a few feet can make a big difference.

First we need to be able to see, feel, hear, smell, sense what is going on around us.  I normally start with a persons breathing, then move to their sight, and on to hearing, and then using all the senses to work together to give us warnings of problems around us.    We as cave people only had our senses to warn us of danger,  the senses are still there, we just tend to ignore them or  even filter them so much we miss a lot of warning signs.

The reason I start with breathing in my classes is to get us into a calmer state of mind.  There is so much going on in our minds, we tend to often miss important things that could warn us to an oncoming danger.  I will not get you into a deep meditative state in a short training course, but lets focus on if there are a millions thoughts running through your mind right now, we get it down to a thousand or so.  We can do this by just concentrating on our breathing for a few counts or moments.  Anything that helps you cut through the millions of thoughts for a few moments.

I then move to seeing, unless your blind,then move on to hearing.  You would have to read and study a lot of literature to understand that we filter out a lot of what we see.  But take my word for it just for a little while.  I am not sure what the reason is but we tend to focus in small areas, sort of like we are watching a TV screen, or computer screen, so the first thing we want to do is open that focus up a bit, actually quite a bit.

After you have taken a few deep breaths, gently close your eyes, gently.  Now take a few more deep smooth even breaths, and listen to what is going on around your, feel the wind or fan or vibrations in the floor of the air conditioner running.   Once you have done that for a few seconds, think about a movie theater, one with a big screen, and you have ended up in the first row of the theater.  You want to see all that is going on in that big screen, so when you open your eyes, you want to see at the same time everything you can from as high as you can see, to as low and from side to side.  Don't worry to much about focusing on anything or ability to do that is working perhaps to well.  We want to see all of it, so when you gently open your eyes, think of the movie theater and see everything.

You may have to try this a few times gently closing and opening your eyes.  But practice.  When your mind takes in what you see, it will automatically tell you to focus on anything it feel you need to be aware of.  Close your eyes again and open them, anything you looked at is now in the mind as a possible threat, or no threat, or a run like hell threat.  But any changes will register on the mind as you look at everything out there.  Then your mind will focus on the change.  This takes practice, but after a while you will trust your mind to pull you into focus anything you need to know.

Then lets move to hearing, we are taught to not listen into conversations that are not associated with us.  We also teach ourselves to filter in and out what we think is important to us.  One this is just common courtesy to focus on what someone we are talking to is saying.  But we tend to let these filters get in the way of noticing things that maybe of danger to us.  What we want to do is like we did with seeing, open up our hearing again, to hear more of what is going on around you.

This also takes practice, close your eyes take some deep smooth rhythmic breaths, to calm our mind down a bit.  Now listen hear what is going on around you, if you are in a somewhat quiet place, try and place where the sound is coming from.  As a child we actually were very good at this, and got better with age, now we tend to have lost a lot of that.  Once again if your study a lot of literature, there is a lot of science behind what we do and do not hear, and why.

If you can pin point one sound and think you know where it is coming from open your eyes see everything but then let your mind focus your vision on the source of the sound.  If you have it now close your eyes again, take the deep breaths to help center us again, and now move your whole body to another direction till you perceive the sound coming from another direction.  Now open your eyes, see everything, but then let the mind focus on the sound source again, aligning your eyes and ears to the sound source.  As you practice you will find you do not have to turn your body much at all to perceive the sound coming from another direction.  Make sure you try it with the sound behind you as well.  When ever you get a chance practice this, it is often said blind people hear much better than a seeing person, yet all the scientific tests prove this wrong, they just practice understanding the sounds more that you.

We next move on to the sense of smell, and the sense of touch or wind on our skin, as we practice these, we then find that we have a much better sense of what is going on around us. Scientific American did an article on  what we often call the 6th sense, and science has brought it down to for most part, it is all our senses working together to tell us things we are not getting from the use of just one or two senses.  I can buy into this, but also have no problem with thinking some of us do seem to have an extra 6th sense, and that it also can be honed to a finer point as well.

One of my class field trips is often to a bar or other social gathering place, although bars seem to work best.  I ask the student to get a feel for what is going on in the bar, breath, close the eyes the whole thing.  Then I ask them to take a long trip to the lavatory, and to sense what is going on at different tables as they do.  With a little practice, then can pick up on tension at some tables, more than others, even couples having a spat vs them really getting into each other.  The guy that is not getting along with his friends, or co workers.  Some is pretty easy to work out.

If you study body langues most will come to you as you look around, but even people that have not studied body language seem to sense the different moods going on in the bar.  Have you ever gone home even as a child and as you walked in the door you felt that there was tension in the air, it is the same sense perceptions, you are using in the bar.  To some it comes from smell to them, they can't explain it often but they can sense a different smell between different tension levels.  Others it is an inherent ability to read body langue.  Others hear levels and tension in voices, and in all of us it is a bit of all of it  We just need to work and practice to make it helpful to us.

Ok, how does this help make us safer, well in the office you hear, smell, feel vibrations of what is going on around you all the time.  You see things going on around you all the time, but with practice you also will notice tensions going up by all of those senses when a problem shows up, like a person that does not belong in your office shows up, even before the weapon appears, something tells you things are not right here.

I often tweet that is like when you hear music you enjoy, and the tempo or chord is not right, you may not know what exactly was wrong with the music, but you know something is not right.  When you throw a pebble into a quiet pond and watch the ripples fan out, you can see when something has effected them, you can not see under the surface, but you can see there has been a change to the ripple pattern, and that something is not the same.  As you walk to your car, you notice that something does not feel right, perhaps not what it is exactly but something.   So you now actively go through your senses to figure it out, but as you are doing so, you make sure you have the keys in your hand, keys to go back into the house or office, or store you just left, or to get into your car and lock the doors quickly.

We can look at the lock on our front door, and if needed get someone to tell us it will hold for a certain period of time, or we need to replace the door, and or the lock.  In most cases this is one of those times where the TV and movies have it right, most doors with the best lock will not stand up to a well place kick, so adjust our security in our house to deal with it.  Have a plan to move to a bed room or other room, have a plan to escape the home altogether.   Remember Police response is usually at best 5 minutes, out, and that 5 minutes does not even start until someone tells the police there is a problem.

So we get a weapon, train with it, and study how we would use it in our home.  We decide to call the police, keep the phone on speaker, and let them know the situation, as we move to a place to hide that we can shoot from that will protect us from the bad guy's shots.  We make sure everyone else in the home is in a safe place. We announce that we have a weapon and that the police have been called, in most cases that will be the end of it, we just need to wait for the police to arrive, the 911 dispatcher on the speaker phone can keep us up to date on that.  If the would be attackers say they are the police, have them call in, and let the dispatcher tell us they are valid.

Be ready to move to another location in the home if you have too, and have a place you can hide again and be safe to shoot around.  Often this is a good place to have more ammunition if your first warning calls them did not stop the situation.

In any case do not try and go confront someone that is beating on your door, or has made it into the home, get to safe place and wait for them to come to you.  It is your home or office, you know the turf better than anyone, so wait them out.  Once a dispatcher has heard what you are preparing to do, they will get the Police moving quickly.

In an office having a weapon is often not an option, so find places to escape to, with leaving the office the first thought.  Get on the phone tell the police as soon as it is safe to do so, but be moving to safety the whole time.  

In a restaurant or movie theater, be moving away as soon as you feel in danger.  You can say you are sorry  later, then key is to get moving to safety.  It is unfortunate, but the more people you put between you and the bad guy, the better your chance at surviving.

We have covered a lot of things here, but some of it you can find on different CTI youtube videos, others on this blog it different spots.

The whole reason for this writing is to help you take more control of your safety, and not rely on police to be your first line of defense.  I give lectures and talks all over the world on how to make yourself safer, call or write CTI if we can support you or your group in some way.

Friday, April 5, 2013

FAA to Delay Tower Closures Until June 15

The control towers scheduled to be shut down due to the sequester have a ten-week reprieve while the FAA deals with the implications and challenges of such a move. The closures will still likely happen without local sources of funding, which many communities are not able to sustain. The FAA is required to cut a total of $637 million from their budget; 149 towers at airports with fewer than 10,000 commercial flights per year are affected, nearly a third of the air traffic control towers in operation.

The FAA says the extra two months will allow the agency to attempt to resolve "multiple legal challenges to the closure decisions." Extending the transition deadline, the FAA says, "will give the agency and airports more time to execute changes to the National Airspace System."
"This has been a complex process, and we need to get this right," said U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, "Safety is our top priority. We will use this additional time to make sure communities and pilots understand the changes at their local airports."

The agency will also furlough 47,000 employees for as many as 11 days over the next several months. The impact on air safety and efficiency will be felt more strongly in smaller markets not funded through protected grants.