I have been considering all of the changes I have seen in training and philosophy regarding law enforcement response to active shooter situations and Boston Bomber/Mumbai style terror attacks over the course of my career. I recall that the Post Analysis of the Boston Bombing response was critical about Command and Control and the fire discipline of the officers involved in some of the shootouts. In a nutshell, there was an implication that LE responded in more of a disorganized “swarm” than they did a nice…orderly… “OP”.
Well, from an LEO response end of things, I’m tending to see a successful American LE response to “shitters” like Boston or Mumbai being more of a “swarming” than an organized “operation”.
I once sat through a debrief of the Navy Yard Shooting (the real one) and the critique was that tons of cops from everywhere swarmed the area (like in Boston) with little coordination or communication. Nobody responded to staging areas, nobody awaited orders, most responders “self-deployed”.
I say…that’s why a days long Mumbai event won’t likely happen here. Sure cops may wind up shooting in all directions, but to some extent that’s going to be the reality of an effective response. Cops are going to respond from everywhere, with guns, and things are going to resolve in relatively short order. Certainly, it’s not going to look like a cut-scene from Call of Duty, and there will most likely be some stray rounds and friendly fire incidents. Smooth and organized rapid deployments are things of TV…not reality.
I make an analogy to the para-drops on D-day. Cops will likely self-organize into small units and go hunting. That’s what ultimately happened at the Navy Yard. It took some time and wasn’t pretty, but a small mixed unit finally hunted the shooter down and killed him.
Sitting around waiting for it all “to go as planned” ain’t gonna happen.
And that isn’t a “failure” IMO.
What I think law enforcement planners and trainers should start doing is “planning for imperfection”. Instead of insisting on more and more exercises and tabletops expecting cops to respond to staging areas to await deployment in “real world”, they need to start considering what is most likely going to happen in reality and develop tactics and strategies accordingly.
If you are ever confronted with a situation where you have to escape from a kidnapping attempt or vehicular ambush, and backing out of the killzone is impossible, a simple rule to keep in mind is….
….consider the size/weight of your vehicle and the size/weight of the vehicles blocking you in.
Regardless of that comparison, you do not want to impact the engine end of a vehicle with yours. Most of the mass of a vehicle is in the engine and you don’t want to strike the heaviest part of their car with yours.
If you absolutely have to push your way out of a roadblock, pick the car that is as close to or smaller than the size of yours and aim for the back end of it.
You do NOT want to hit the other vehicle at a high rate of speed, 20-25 MPH is the sweet spot. Do not hit the brake as you push through, remember to keep your foot on the gas and accelerate through. Be prepared for airbag activation, but do NOT stop. Recover from the impact and drive away ASAP.
I have been a fan of TacStrike Targets since my purchase of one of Rob’s stake in targets three years ago.
I decided to expand my collection with one of TacStrikes 1/4 Scale Steel Target Systems this year.
The system comes with a base that can accept 1″X2″ or 2″X2″ wood stakes if you want to shoot paper, and a center pocket that accepts the target rack post.
The 1/4 scale silhouette is made of AR500 steel and “floats” inside the rack so that it can absorb impacting rounds without having to swing or rock. It also lets it ring like a bell.
The AR500 plate destroys incoming rounds:
The .40 S&W and .223 I put on it were reduced to powder and flat disks of jacket metal:
If you are in the market for some steel check out TacStrike.
Good stuff at good prices and the owner, Rob Tackett, is good people.