Home > Leadership, The Monday Musings Column > on hostile vehicle mitigation

on hostile vehicle mitigation

I try not to get angry because it is such a wasteful emotion and, in many cases, is purely self-indulgent so not getting angry is, for, me my first principle. But I do get frustrated and one of the biggest causes of that is inaction, either on my part or in others, and when that inaction leads to people getting killed then it gets hard to apply that first principle effectively.

The world of 2017 is the one that we have collectively created and it is a far more dangerous place that it both should and could be. It is a much changed world from the one that I brought my children into and whilst positive changes such as the advances in medicine and technology are fine I am far less impressed with another rise in terror attacks.

Younger readers may not be old enough to remember the IRA campaigns in the UK, but they had a considerable impact on my personal and professional life in the seventies and eighties and when they ended there was that hope that such things were behind us. However they are not and we have to face up to the fact that they are likely to be a part of our life for at least another generation.

We have to rely on our political leaders to deal with the primary strategy and tactics for dealing with terror and this is where one of my current frustrations lies for there are things that can be done that are being ignored. One of the current terror tactics is the hostile vehicle attack and yet whilst there are solutions available to mitigate the risk and impact of such attacks there is little evidence of these solutions being deployed.

These solutions can be permanent or temporary and range from basic metal barriers that are in an L shaped form so that any vehicle driving into the barrier knocks it down causing the base to rise up under the vehicle and lift its wheels off the ground to more solid barriers that will stop a truck. My own preference is for the latter as they can also be blast proof to mitigate the impact of such hostile vehicles that are packed with explosive. I agree that such barriers can be intrusive, but that is a small price to pay for safety and in any case they can be decorated to improve the visual impact. They are not that costly either and, if locations are commercially savvy, they can sell the space on them for advertising to recoup the cost. Have a look at this test of one such system to see how effective they can be: https://youtu.be/CwAgRrpYmK0

Why so little is being done to protect public areas baffles and frustrates me, but I won’t let anger get in the way. Instead I will do all that I can to lobby for something to be done. There is very little we can do to prevent attacks despite the best efforts of law enforcement agencies, but we can do something reduce the impact through deployment of hostile vehicle mitigation solutions.

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