jeffmay | 01 January, 2016 18:22
It’s Time to Believe
“I couldn’t believe what I was seeing.” “I didn’t believe that they were gunshots.” ”We didn’t understand what was happening.” “How can something like this happen here?”
These are some of the things that were said about the recent terrorist attacks in Paris, France and Riverside, California. The people involved in these horrific events over and over, expressed feelings of disbelief. While these attacks were horrible, to say that they were unbelievable is akin to burying your head in the sand like an ostrich. Unfortunately, this is the reality of our society. ISIS and their followers have an agenda, the eradication of anyone who does not see the world through their lens.
If we are to prevail through these attacks on our unarmed, innocent population we must “arm” that population with training. The first part of that training is mindset. The idea that attacks like these will not take place in our city, our town, our mall, or our school must stop. We as a populace must understand that these attacks can occur anywhere and at any time, to any one of us. We must arm ourselves with information and teach our mind to “believe” that the sounds it is hearing are the sounds of violence and act.
Once we believe that these events can take place around us we need to take measures to learn what to do once they do happen…We MUST TRAIN. Training does not mean learning combat and weapons tactics or becoming a black belt. Training means education, learning, and believing that someday you might be face to face with evil. The best way to train your mind to react in these situations is play the, “If-Then game”. That is to say, “If…someone walks into the lobby of my office with a gun. Then…I will either flee to safety or fight.” Observe your surrounds at all times, pay attention, and have a plan. When you walk into a building look around and see what is happening. This act of paying attention to the world around you will dramatically increase your chances of survival. Also, always look for and know the locations of all the exits wherever you are. These simple steps of learning, paying attention, and having a plan are critical and will transform you from being a victim into a survivor.
Riverside will not be the last time that terrorism is seen on our shores, far from it. It is time we all believe that this evil is out there and arm ourselves with knowledge. APEX SCF offers the training ordinary citizens desperately need in order to combat and survive the evil of terrorist and active shooters. Sign up today and learn from our cadre of experienced and caring sheepdogs so that the next time the wolf tries to terrorize he is met with a flock that all have fangs of their own.
jeffmay | 22 October, 2015 21:45
The recent events in Roseburg, Oregon have shed light on a mindset that has to change in this country, that of the Victim. For the most part, life in America is safe and the majority of us live our lives in peace and happiness. We go about our days not concerning ourselves with the evil that walks amongst us. Unfortunately, all too often, we are reminded that there are monsters out there. The events at Umpqua Community College (UCC) on October 1st were just the latest tragedy to strike this nation. As a law enforcement officer, not being able to prevent such attacks weigh heavily on my mind. This was the driving factor in my decision to teach life saving techniques and attitudes to as many school professionals and students as possible.
At APEX SCF we have trained thousands of school employees in the tactics and mental attitudes that can save lives in situations such as the Oregon shooting. From the reports I have seen on the UCC shooting, the motivation and tactics used by the shooter are similar to most shootings we have seen with the exception of one thing. At some point in the event, the shooter was able to talk with his victims, even lining them up prior to shooting them. He asked each in turn what religion they were and shot those who proclaimed they were Christian, sparing those who did not. This fact is what is truly frightening about this attack, people standing still and waiting to be shot.
During an Active Shooter/Assailant event the mindset of the killer is to rack up the highest score possible before the game is over, in other words, kill as many people as they can until they are killed or they kill themselves. These people are not planning on surviving their attacks, their deaths are the ultimate end. They are not concerned with taking hostages and negotiating with police, their only objective is to kill. If you are involved in one of these events you must understand this, your very life depends on it. You have to fight if confronted by one of these monsters. You must have the mindset of a survivor, of a warrior. Everybody has this ability inside of them, you just need to make that commitment to yourself now; you will fight, you will win, and you will survive.
Active assailants are counting on the idea that you will be their victim and die like a good little sheep, don’t let them. Action is always, let me repeat that, action is ALWAYS faster than reaction. If you cannot escape from an assailant and are confronted by them, ACT! Do not stand there and let them shoot you, fight with all the ferocity you can. Use your emotions, use your anger and fight. The active assailant is a coward and when confronted with courage and bravery, the coward will not prevail. Chris Mintz understood this on October 1st, he was shot seven times by the coward at UCC yet he survived because he fought the monster and the coward retreated.
America has changed, this is something that we all must face. We can no longer count on evil not finding us. We must prepare ourselves for that moment of testing and vow to not let monsters and cowards succeed. Make the commitment now to survive and if that moment does find you, you will be prepared and you will prevail.
Lead Instructor APEX SCF
jeffmay | 07 April, 2015 21:48
School Transportation News, in its November 30, 2006, issue, reported that the National Association of State Directors of Pupil Transportation Services (NASDPTS) called for renewed security training for school bus drivers. In a resolution passed by its members, NASDPTS was reported to call for all school bus driver training to include, but not be limited to, training on personal safety, parental custody issues, crimes (vandalism, theft, assault), hijackings, and possession of dangerous materials or weapons. The organization also reportedly encouraged all school districts to ensure that all drivers complete a security training program.
jeffmay | 25 February, 2015 22:54
Increasingly, concern has been given to bus security. As a result of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, train and airplane security have been substantially increased, but this increase has not been provided to BUS security. Baggage is neither inspected, nor identification checked.
Some carriers have issued out security wandson buses, but they do not appear to be routinely used.
Some carriers deployed video cameras across their entire fleet to increase safety and driver compliance by combining data and video analytics with real-time driver feedback.
Only a few carriers currently requires ID or credit card for all passengers in an effort to increase safety. At major stations, passengers are subject to open-bag checks, ticket checks, and pat-downs with metal detectors.
jeffmay | 22 February, 2015 17:33
Long Island Rail Road
The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has commended five rail and mass transit agencies from across the nation for earning TSA’s highest rating of “Gold Standard” on their 2014 Baseline Assessments for Security Enhancement for their dedication to building a strong security program.
The BASE program is designed to establish a security standard for individual system security programs and assess progress. This voluntary comprehensive review of transit agency security programs focuses on multiple categories identified by the transit community as fundamentals for a sound transit security program. They include a review of topics such as an agency’s security plans, security training, drills/exercise programs, public outreach efforts and background check programs. The BASE program analyzes the security program for each transit system and identifies opportunities to further enhance security.
Virginia Railway Express
“These agencies are to be commended for their commitment and hard work that this level of achievement requires and for their continued dedication to ensure the security of travelers nationwide,” said TSA Acting Administrator Melvin Caraways.
These agencies were reviewed in 2014 and attained high scores across all categories. TSA considered this caliber of performance as reaching a “Gold Standard” and recognized them for having strong security programs. TSA continues to work with all transit agencies across the country to develop and implement robust security practices system-wide.
Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority
The six agencies recognized for achieving the Gold Standard in 2014 are: Virginia Railway Express in Northern Virginia; the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority in Washington, D.C.; the Metropolitan Transit Authority’s Long Island Railroad in New York; the Pinellas Sun coast Transit Authority in St. Petersburg, Fla.; and Hillsborough Area Regional Transit in Tampa, Fla.
The BASE program was developed to increase domain awareness, enhance prevention and protection capabilities and further response preparedness of transit systems nationwide. BASE is aimed at meeting the requirements in the 9/11 Commission Act's security assessment section, which directs TSA to identify critical assets, infrastructure and systems and their vulnerabilities and assist bus and public transportation authorities to address their security program
jeffmay | 28 January, 2015 21:15
If you work in real estate, you undoubtedly do the following tasks all of the time, but did you know that you could be putting yourself in danger? Here's how you can stay on guard and protect yourself.
As a real estate professional, you put yourself at risk every day — you just might not realize it.
Meeting new clients, showing properties, holding open houses, letting strangers get into your car, and even your marketing may be jeopardizing your personal safety.
Everyday tasks seem harmless, but as some real estate professionals have learned the hard way, these situations can expose you to danger.
Real estate agents are considered by security experts as a high-risk profession, says Jeff L. May President of ApexSCF in Reno Nevada.
“The root of the issue is that you have real estate agents with no formal personal protection training who are then meeting with complete strangers at odd times of the day and in vacant homes,” May affirms. “Real estate professionals put themselves at risk at so many points. The industry opens itself up to predators.”
Below are tasks common to practically every real estate professional. Learn the risks associated with each and what precautions you can take to stay safe.
Meeting with a new client for the first time:
The Risk: Meeting with people you don't know can put your safety at risk. You don’t know whether this person could potentially be a criminal, stalker, thief, or worse.
5 Safety Tips:
1. Meet at the office first. Get them on your territory before you visit any property with them so you can learn more about them and collect personal information about them for your files.
2. Ask for identification. The public is used to having their identification checked, so don’t be reluctant to ask because you’re scared you’ll offend someone. Tell clients it’s company policy that driver’s licenses will be photocopied. “This will significantly reduce your risk because the bad guys don’t want to give you their I.D. or get their picture taken,” May affirms.
3. Have all clients fill out a customer identification form. You can find an example of this at REALTOR.org. Click on “Prospect Identification Form” under the Office Safety Forms heading. The form asks for car make and license number, contact information, and employer information, and also requests a photocopy of the driver’s license.
4. Introduce them to a coworker. When you meet them at the office, introduce them to at least one other person in your office. Criminals won’t like that others have seen them for identification purposes.
5. Always have a coworker go with you. Let the client know you will be having a coworker or a friend go with you when showing a property. This too is one more level of protection for you.
jeffmay | 19 January, 2015 20:30
As you know, on January 7th two black clad individuals forced their way into the Paris headquarters of satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo opening fire. They used AK-47 style automatic weapons on a staff meeting full of employees. By the time the shooters made their getaway 10 of those employees (and two police officers) lay dead with 10 more seriously injured. While the media is focusing on the reasons behind the shooting I can't help but think about how US employers should be responding to this shocking news.
The US has seen its share of workplace shootings:
While the specifics of the Paris attack are unique, they should act as a warning to employers. In the last 4 years the US Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that between 397-475 people died each year due to homicide at work. The CDC Centers for Disease Control reported that the number one killer for women in the workplace is homicide. Every company needs to prepare their employees for an active shooter in their work location, just as we would prepare them for a fire. A written emergency plan should be practiced regularly and included in new employee orientation. While not every scenario can be anticipated, there should be a basic plan, with the aim that employees can survive the event.
The Department of Homeland Security has issued guidelines for what to do if an active shooter enters a workplace. It emphasizes that employees should know how to get out of the building (1. Run). If their exit is blocked by the shooter, employees should find a place to barricade themselves (2.Hide). Finally, if confronted by the shooter there are statistics that support trying to disable the shooter as a survival tactic (3. Attack). Most importantly authorities need to be alerted as soon as possible.
If your company doesn't already have the basic security of swipe-in badges, key pad entrances, panic buttons, and security cameras at all entrances then they should be considered. While these measures may not stop an attacker, they may stall the attack and bring emergency services to the site more quickly.