These are rough Polite Society Discussion notes.
Bombs are the weapons of choice among terrorists worldwide
** this is not intended as instruction of any kind. This is intended as a topic for discussion
· Bomb Appearance
o Not obvious
o Bombs can look like or be concealed in ANYTHING
o In one bomb class a bomb was concealed it in a flowerpot with a live plant covering it. It triggered with a motion detector that detonated the bomb when someone came within feet of the flowerpot.
o If the terrorist wants you blown up badly enough, he’ll succeed and you’ll never know what hit you.
· Bomber Appearance Here’s what to look for:
o Clothing that is bulky or excessive for the weather (to hide the bomb)
o Hands hidden (possibly holding the switch to detonate the bomb) Glove?!!!
o A strange chemical odor or excessive cologne to cover up that smell
o The bomber focused, but unresponsive.
§ Suicide bombers often have the “1000 yard stare”
§ usually unresponsive to questions or commands
o Heavy luggage or backpacks that don’t fit the situation.
§ The average weight of a bomb used by a suicide bomber is around 20 lbs.
§ The Madrid train bombers all had very heavy backpacks.
§ The Moscow bomber placed his bomb in a rolling suitcase.
§ Not all the bombers wear their bombs.
o Nervousness, excessive sweating, or repeated mumbling of a prayer or mantra
o Exposed wires anywhere on a person’s body
o Repeated attempts to avoid security checkpoints and/or police officers
· Beware of any suspicious packages.
o The bomber might not be a suicide bomber. He or she might plant the bomb and walk/drive away.
o If the bomb is not worn by a terrorist, it is most likely:
§ hidden in a car,
§ discarded backpack
§ duffel bag
§ trash can.
· What should you do:
o GET AWAY!
o 20lb suicide bomb vest loaded with shrapnel is
§ Dangerous within 400 meters!
§ 15 meters (50 feet) is the distance between life and death in most suicide bombings
· If you are within 15 meters of the bomber when he detonates, you will likely die.
· If you are beyond 15 meters, you will likely live, but be seriously injured.
o Whether you live or die depends:
§ type of bomb
§ how far away from the bomb you are
§ Ideally, distance combined with some type of cover that will stop shrapnel and projectiles is best.
o For the 500kg Oslo car bomb, people were likely hit by shrapnel up to 1/2 mile away!
o Primary objective is to get yourself and loved ones as far away from the bomber as possible.
o Once you’ve made it to safety, report the person to police.
o Don’t hang around in the kill zone looking for a policeman.
· If you are armed with a firearm, should you shoot the bomber?
o If you are right about your guess and kill the bomber before he detonates, you will be a hero.
o If you are wrong you will be either blown up or arrested.
o If you decide to shoot the bomber, expect to die.
§ Remember that danger zone of 400 meters I talked about earlier?
§ How many of you can make a headshot at 400 meters with your concealed carry pistol?
§ If you can’t, you are in the kill zone.
§ If the bomber detonates you will be seriously injured or killed.
§ By definition, if you are close enough to take a shot, you are going to be within range of the bomb’s blast.
o If you do shoot the bomber, you must go for a head shot.
§ If he is wearing a bomb vest, your bullet will likely detonate the bomb if you hit it.
§ Even if you instantly incapacitate the bomber with a brain stem shot, the bomb still may detonate.
· Command detonated by another person watching discreetly from afar
· “dead man switch”
· Your bullet could cause it to blow.
· The possibilities are endless.
§ You don’t know how the bomb is set to go off.
§ If you engage you have to expect to be blown up.
o You need to decide what you are going to do BEFORE it happens.
§ Study the subject and make your decision now.
§ You won’t have time to consider all the variables in the heat of the moment.
· After the Engagement or Detonation
o Often terrorist bomber have “handlers”, “dispatchers”, or security people assigned to them.
§ The role of these people is to protect the bomber in case anyone intervenes or to detonate the bomb if the terrorist gets cold feet.
§ Scan for anyone who appears to be paying undue attention to the situation, especially if that person is behind some type of cover or at a discreet distance away.
§ If you choose to shoot, you may be in a fight with more than just the bomber!
· Russia airport bombing
o 3-5 people / suitcase bombs
o Some reports are stating that the actual bomber was a female and she had a male accomplice at her side to appear less conspicuous
o 1 person / car bomb
o 2 ???
o When deciding to take the shot, not only are you dealing with a bomb, but you may have to fight five other people as well.
§ Likely have guns.
§ Likely that they provide extra security in case the bomber was discovered
§ Look for people watching who are not scared or stunned or on cell phones.
§ Be cautious of people in uniforms.
· The Oslo bomber facilitated his later shooting by wearing a police uniform and ordering the kids to approach him
· Watch for people telling you to do what doesn’t seem safe dressed in:
o fake police,
o fire department uniforms telling you to do what doesn’t seem safe.
· Use your common sense and flee if you think it’s a ruse.
· Get to know what all of the police uniforms in your area look
· Befriend a law enforcement member before hand, get to know them
o If you shoot the bomber, or even if you just see the bomber blow up, do not approach the body!
§ Another bomb planted on body,
§ Primary bomb is on a time delay
§ Command detonated by another person.
o Keep far away!
o Try to get everyone else away too.
o Move quickly to cover after you shoot or he blows up.
o Resist the temptation to open any potential bomb to see what it is.
§ Russian bomb was triggered by the act of the bomber opening the suitcase.
§ If you think it’s a bomb, then treat it like a bomb!
§ Get away and get to cover!
o Beware of the secondary device.
§ Bombers can use more than one bomb.
§ The original bomb is just designed to create havoc and bring in first responders.
§ A second bomb placed in
· an evacuation zone
· obvious command post staging area
· near the body designed to injure more people, specifically fire and police officers.
o After one bomb goes off, look for items that seem out of place…
§ Discarded baggage
§ Strange pieces of trash
§ Recently disturbed ground.
o NEVER EVACUATE TO A PARKING LOT!
§ Cars are the easiest place to hide large amounts of explosive for a secondary device.
§ One very common tactic is to place a small bomb in or near a building or public area.
§ The terrorist knows that the small bomb will trigger an evacuation.
§ He will then place a bigger bomb at the evacuation site to blow up all of the evacuees.
§ It’s easy to hide a (big) bomb in a car.
§ Get far away from anything that may conceal a secondary device
· Medical Care
o You will likely see deaths and serious injuries.
§ Expect to see serious bleeding
§ hearing loss, confusion,
§ head injuries internal injuries
§ victims not be able to walk or hear you.
o Expect that and don’t be stunned.
§ There are several videos of the immediate post blast of the Oslo bombing.
§ People staggering around dazed and unsure of what to do. Don’t be one of those people. Expect to see serious bleeding,
o This is one time when laying injured persons down to prevent spinal injury is counterproductive.
§ Move the injured AWAY from the bomber or bombing area as quickly as possible
§ There may be a secondary device in the area.
§ C-spine stabilization won’t matter if the injured person is laying on top of another bomb
§ Bombing victims seldom have the types of injuries that are aggravated by movement.
§ Get the injured to a safe place so that they aren’t blown up again!
o Establish a casualty collection point behind some hard cover in an area that is as far away from the original bomb as possible.
§ Clear this area of secondary devices before unloading casualties.
§ It may take a while for EMS to enter the scene.
§ Be prepared to treat life threatening bleeding first
· Know how to make or use a pressure bandage and a tourniquet
· Follow up with airway and breathing stabilization and other injuries.
· Take a few minutes to get online and review first aid for
o Penetrating trauma,
o Head injuries.
o Improvised bandages and tourniquets.
o In every terrorist bombing, there have been lives saved because bystanders have known some basic medical skills and have acted quickly