On Wednesday 16th September 2014, Westside BID had the pleasure of hosting some Counter Terrorism Security Advisors (CTSAs). They gave an informative and vital presentation to some hotel employees of Broad Street prior to the Conservative Party Conference.  Some of the information they provided has been shared below:

They started off by pointing out that attackers will usually target crowded places. Following this the different types of Improvised Explosive Devices and the forms they come in were spoken about.  This included person borne devices to vehicle borne devices. The Advisors  then went on to instruct about Hostile Reconnaissance and things to look out for, such as:                                                                                                                              

  • Someone looking around, taking pictures of the building and taking notes.                               

Copthorne-Hotel-Birmingham2

  • People asking questions regarding security and CCTV
  • People trying to hide their faces and avoid eye contact

 

If you notice these things you should question them as to their motive and not give away any information.

 

An interesting message was conveyed about delivery men. They should always make their faces visible, and not cover it with a helmet. If they do not take off their helmet or refuse, the package must not be accepted.

All buildings should have a bomb evacuation point. However it cannot be the same as the fire evacuation point, owing to the fact it should be at least 100m from the building and should be kept secret from non-employees.

The CTSAs then went through what to do in a firearm attack. Here are the main points:

  • Run-if you can and it is safe to do so. Do not run in the direction of the attacker and do not be slowed down by indecision. Leave the building.
  • Hide-if it is not possible to run. Try to lock yourself in a room and then barricade yourself in. Turn off your phone and stay silent.
  • Do not try to make any phone calls until you are out of the building and safe. And when you are, provide all the relevant information – a description of the attacker, a description of the weapon (to the best of your ability), where you are, who is with you and the direction the shooter is heading in.

Information about bags/luggage that has been left behind was also given i.e. what to do and how to act. The key points:

  • Only one person needs to check the item.
  • Stay low when checking the item.
  • Turn off your phone and communication radios at least 25 metres before you approach the item.
  • When checking the bag, look for ID. Do not move the item. If you see anything suspicious in the bag, like nails or a timer, walk away evacuate the building and call the CT or the police.

Copthorne-Hotel-BirminghamUltimately the advice was, that you as an employee or owner, know your premises and what’s normal of customers. If you notice anything suspicious, call and report it.

The Counter-Terrorism Hotline number is: 0800 789 321

If you want more information about the course or want to organise your own, the West Midlands Counter Terrorism Security Advisors number is: 0121 626 5074.