Podcast 72 Testing You

By on October 24, 2013

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In this episode we talk about how terrorist use probing and distracting attacks on their targets to kill more people and what we can do about it.  We also talk about how common criminals do the same thing and what you can do about it.


  • Small Attacks to See what will happen
  • There may be a second attack happening right after the first

What To Do:

  • Figure it out before it starts, what to look for
  • Awareness
  • Don’t be afraid to leave
  • Caught in the middle
    • Don’t get herded like lambs to the slaughter
    • Avoid Funnels and Large Crowds
    • Once people start being rounded up, it’s the end, FIGHT!
    • Get Caught, fight
    • Death Faster?

Security Professional Side of False Alarms

  • Good
    • Give practice when you think it’s real
    • Put stress and make you act
    • After action can save you later
  • Bad
    • People can really get hurt during crowd surges
    • Show what will be done in the event of x (now you need to change it)
    • Lots of paper work and meetings
    • Re-Writing policies

Interview Process/Size Up

  • How close can they get to you?
  • Can you be distracted?
  • What’s your voice like?
  • How’s your body language?
  • What can they get from you?
  • What are your week points?

How to know if you are being probed/sized up

  • Escalation of Force:
    • Voice
    • Cover
    • Threats
    • Weapons
  • Watch as other go through the force continuum
    • Cops being challenged
    • Store clerks telling someone that can’t go in there
    • Continuous questioning
    • Surveillance

Be Prepared to Act

  • Escape!
  • Hide!
  • Fight!
    • Defend, Reinforce, Attack, Withdraw, Delay
  • What equipment do you carry?
    • Weapons, Flashlights, Mulit Tool, Knife, Phone, Maps, Long Guns, Body Armor


  • November 16, 2013 Pistol Fighting Dynamics Low Light in San Antonio TX
  • December 7, 2013 Pistol Fighting Dynamics; Team Work in San Antonio TX
  • December 8, 2013 Rifle Fighting Dynamics; Team Work in San Antonio TX
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Stay Safe,


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  1. William
    November 1, 2013

    Leave a Reply

    Ben, Thank you for the kind response. A few more comments and I am out.
    I think you didn’t go into much detail on the mall shooting/terrorism scenario because it seemed to be just a last, passing thought, just before you signed off the podcast. Had you started to go into detail, that would have entailed a whole new show.
    In the scenario, with your training and skills, you just might make a difference. Me, not so much, having no active shooter and little offensive problem solving training.
    I feel the most productive action I could take in the scenario is to go to a nearby emergency response rallying point and offer any assistance needed.
    As you have already thanked me for my previous comments, no need to answer these few new comments. William

  2. William
    October 28, 2013

    Leave a Reply

    Interesting show, especially liked the idea of after action analysis of potentially dangerous events in life, even those that turned out to be innocuous, and awareness of exits and escape routes.
    Two reasons I would never re-enter a mall during an active shooting event in an attempt to save lives.
    My main responsibility in life is to be around to provide for my family. Reentering the active shooting scene truly jeopardizes this responsibility as I may be wounded or killed. Every adult in my So. Fla. area has the right to be armed for the protection of self and family. If they decide to go about life thinking nothing bad will ever happen, or thinking the police will always be nearby to protect them, it’s on them.
    Secondly, I can’t speak for Texas, but here in So. Florida the response time for at least the first wave of law enforcement would be less than five minutes, possibly much less. By the time I ran to my vehicle to retrieve said long gun, donned plate carrier and made ready, and proceeded to re-enter mall shooting scene, I am pretty sure the first of police would be arriving. If I am lucky enough to not be mistakenly shot by arriving officers, another problem arises. Police arriving at an active shooting scene would not have the luxury of just believing me when I announce to them, “I’m a good guy over hear”. As a precautionary measure, they would have to disarm, subdue and transport me out of the area. (remember I am an unknown to them and a possible threat). This added component to the scenario would have wasted police time and manpower, time that may have been better used to save innocent lives. Yes, my action may have actually cost innocent lives.
    Apoligies for the length of this opinion.

    • Ben Branam
      October 31, 2013

      Leave a Reply

      Thanks for the comment William. I like your decision making thoughts and have come to a very logical conclusion and plan. It’s a good plan and I think you should use it. It’s just not for me. I know your plan is smarter, but I don’t know if I could live with myself if I didn’t try to save people. So I’d go back in. You make a great point about law enforcement. To tell the truth they would probably be more of a problem for me because I know is have to avoid them because they will be shooting first.

      There really is no good answer, but your’s is probably the best. And thanks for mentioning the law enforcement part. I don’t think I mentioned that.

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