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TERRORISM. Unit Objectives. Define terrorism. Identify potential targets in the community. Identify CERT operating procedures for a terrorist incident. Describe the actions to take following a suspected terrorist incident. What Is Terrorism?.

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unit objectives
Unit Objectives
  • Define terrorism.
  • Identify potential targets in the community.
  • Identify CERT operating procedures for a terrorist incident.
  • Describe the actions to take following a suspected terrorist incident.
what is terrorism
What Is Terrorism?

The unlawful use of force or violence committed by a group or individual against persons or property to intimidate or coerce a government, the civilian population, or any segment thereof, in furtherance of political or social objectives.

--U.S. Department of Justice

terrorist goals
Terrorist Goals
  • Mass casualties
  • Loss of critical resources
  • Disruption of vital services
  • Disruption of the economy
  • Individual and mass panic
terrorist targets
Terrorist Targets
  • Terrorist select “soft” or lightly protected targets over “hard” or very secure targets.
  • Terrorists may also be drawn to major events such as parades or athletic events. Because of this, you may see increased security measures to help deter and prevent terrorism.
terrorism exists because
Terrorism Exists Because. . . .
  • It is cheap
  • It is mobile
  • It is low tech
  • It is deniable
  • It is more effective than the political process
  • It is less drastic than total warfare
  • And it WORKS!
terrorist weapons






Terrorist Weapons
biological weapons
Biological Weapons
  • Targets:
    • People, animals, crops
  • Routes of exposure:
    • Inhalation, ingestion, absorption
  • Agents:
    • May take days or weeks to be confirmed.
    • May spread far beyond initial contamination point.
  • Considered high risk.
biological weapons1
Biological Weapons
  • Biological agents are in three groups,
    • Toxins
      • Ricin
    • Bacteria
      • Anthrax
    • Viruses
      • Small Pox
biological weapons2
Biological Weapons
  • Only 2 known successful etiological attacks in the USA;
    • 751 persons were stricken with salmonella in September 1984 due to intentional contamination of food at 10 restaurants in Wasco County, Oregon
    • The other attack was when British soldiers gave small pox exposed blankets to native American Indians.
biological weapons3
Biological Weapons
  • Transmission of these Biological Weapons would most likely be accomplished by aerosol dissemination.
biological weapons4
Biological Weapons
  • Symptoms don't show up for hours or days.
  • Most are not person to person transmitted except for Small Pox, Ebola Virus and Pneumonic Plague.
  • Position Uphill, Upwind.
  • Respiratory and Protective Clothing.
biological weapons5
Biological Weapons
  • Antidotes/First Aid =
  • Strip, Decon with soap and water
  • Bag clothing

Most antidotes are ineffective.

NOTE: In specific situations, a 5% solution of bleach may be effective as a decon solution

nuclear weapons
Nuclear Weapons
  • Much different than conventional weapons:
    • Many casualties
    • Very large area affected
    • Long-term health effects
  • Considered relatively low risk
nuclear weapons1
Nuclear Weapons
  • Types of radiation:
    • Alpha
    • Beta
    • Gamma
nuclear weapons2
Nuclear Weapons


  • Least dangerous externally
  • More dangerous internally
  • Particles are large
  • Travel only a few feet
nuclear weapons3
Nuclear Weapons


  • Smaller particles
  • Some penetration
  • Causes more skin damage
nuclear weapons4
Nuclear Weapons


  • Most dangerous
  • Can penetrate into and through the body
nuclear weapons5
Nuclear Weapons

Radiation Devices

  • Improvised nuclear device:
    • An actual nuclear weapon explosion (conventional bomb plus radioactive material).
  • Radiological dispersal device:
    • Bomb laced with radioactive material or a failed nuclear device.
nuclear weapons6
Nuclear Weapons


  • Radiation Sickness
  • Radiation Injury
  • Radiation Poisoning
nuclear weapons7
Nuclear Weapons

Radiation Sickness

  • Caused by exposure to large amounts of radiation.


  • Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, hemorrhage, and lowers the body's resistance to disease and infection.
  • Symptoms occur the day after the exposure and may last a few days.
  • Depending on the exposure, it may take seven to eight weeks to recover.
nuclear weapons8
Nuclear Weapons

Radiation injury:

  • Consists of localized injuries such as skin burns, skin lesions, and loss of hair caused by radiation.
  • Occur from high amounts of the less penetrating types of radiation like beta particles.
  • Usually confined to the hands, since such large amounts of exposure generally occur during improper handling of radiation sources.
nuclear weapons9
Nuclear Weapons

Radiation poisoning:

  • Caused by dangerous amounts of internal radiation.
    • Anemia and cancer.
    • Internal exposure from alpha particles is the most common cause of radiation poisoning.
nuclear weapons10
Nuclear Weapons
  • Radiation sickness, injury, and poisoning are NOT contagious or infectious.
  • Treating or helping a victim who has been exposed to radiation WILL NOTexpose emergency response personnel to radiation.
  • If the victim is covered with radioactive material like dust, the material can contaminate responders and cause radiation sickness.
incendiary devices
Incendiary Devices
  • Used to initiate combustion
  • Easy to use
  • Considered high risk/low impact
  • Easy to make
    • 3 main parts
      • Igniter or fuse
      • Container or body
      • Incendiary material or filler
chemical agents
Chemical Agents
  • Five types
    • Blister
    • Blood
    • Choking
    • Nerve
    • Irritants (Riot – Control Agents)
  • Components readily available
  • Onset of symptoms from immediate to 18 hours
  • Considered moderate risk
blister agents
Blister Agents
  • First used in WW1, developed to get around gas masks.
  • Smells like garlic, sulfur or geraniums.
  • Mustard (effect delayed)
  • Nitrogen Mustard (effect delayed)
  • Lewisite (effect immediate)
  • All are heavier than air and can be absorbed through skin, lungs, and eyes.
blister agents1
Blister Agents

Signs/symptoms of exposure;

  • Reddening of eyes/gritty irritation, reddening of skin, severe itching/burning of skin, blisters with/without pain, sore throat, hoarseness, dry cough /nausea /vomiting.
  • Signs/symptoms may not present until 2-24 hours after exposure.
  • Blister Agents are an immediate inhalation hazard, 30 minutes on the skin and most exposures will be fatal.
  • Eyes are the most vulnerable.
  • 80% of decontamination will be accomplished by removing the clothing.
blister agents2
Blister Agents
  • Victims usually die from secondary infection.
  • In WWI 25% of all U. S. casualties were from blister agents. (70,000 casualties of 272,000 total casualties), however only 2% were fatal.
blister agents3
Blister Agents

Antidotes/First Aid =

  • Immediately wash skin and clothes with 5% solution of sodium hypochlorite or liquid household bleach within one minute.
  • Cut and remove contaminated clothing, flush contaminated skin area again with 5% sodium hypochlorite solution, then wash contaminated skin area with soap and water, (30 minute window on skin or Death).
  • Treatment by Medical Personnel.
blood agents
Blood Agents
  • First used in WW1.
  • Smell like Bitter Almonds.
  • Hydrogen Cyanide (lighter than air)
  • Cyanogen Chloride (heavier than air)
  • Absorbed into the bloodstream and deprive blood cells of oxygen.
  • Exposure may be made through liquid or vapor contact with any exposed skin, inhalation, or ingestion.
blood agent
Blood Agent
  • Signs/symptoms
    • Headaches
    • Strong stimulated breathing
    • Loss of consciousness / convulsions
    • Apnea
    • Reddish Skin and Lips.
    • Quick gulp of air, DEATH in minutes.
    • “Bluish” across the nose and cheeks and around the mouth.
blood agent1
Blood Agent
  • If the poisoning occurs rapidly there is no time for symptoms to develop and exposed persons may then suddenly collapse and die.
choking agents
Choking Agents
  • First used in WW1
  • Smells; Newly mowed hay, Pool chlorine.
  • Phosgene- Frequently created accidentally at home by combining bleach and ammonia.
  • Chlorine, Currently used widely in water and wastewater plants.
  • Sulfur Dioxide- Currently used widely in wastewater plants.
choking agents1
Choking Agents
  • Attack the lungs.
  • Following exposure through inhalation, the lungs fill with fluid, which prevents oxygen from being absorbed by, and carbon dioxide from being removed from, the blood.
  • Death results from lack of oxygen and is similar to drowning.
choking agents2
Choking Agents
  • Antidotes/First Aid = Treatment by Medical Personnel.
nerve agents
Nerve Agents
  • Developed in the 1930’s. G in name means it was designed in Germany.
  • Smells;
    • G= Colorless but may be have fruity odor,
    • Vx= Odorless, sulfur odor if impure and liquid is slight yellow color.
  • GA (Tabun)
  • GB (Sarin)
  • GD (Soman)
  • VX (no name) (heavier than air and can be absorbed through eyes /lungs /skin.)
nerve agents1
Nerve Agents
  • Affect the central nervous system.
  • Quickest acting
  • Most lethal of all chemical agents, acting within seconds of exposure.
  • Victims of nerve agents experience constricted pupils, runny nose, shortness of breath, convulsions, and cessation of breathing.
nerve agents2
Nerve Agents

Signs/symptoms of exposure;

  • Pinpoint pupils
  • Runny nose/salivation
  • Tightness of the chest
  • Coughing, jerking, and twitching
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Nausea /vomiting /diarrhea
  • Sudden loss of consciousness
  • Convulsions / apnea.
nerve agent
Nerve Agent
  • Sarin (GB), Soman (GD) and Tabun (GA) have a 2-3 hour duration.
  • "VX" last days or weeks in an oily state, it is a persistent chemical.
nerve agent1
Nerve Agent
  • Antidotes/First Aid = Auto injector, Hose down first except VX, Remove clothing then Decon.
  • (30 minute window on skin or Death). Treatment by Medical Personnel.
  • Death usually occurs within two minutes of receiving a lethal dose.
  • For VX decon with bleach solution.
  • For GB decon with a caustic soda solution.
riot control agents
Riot – Control Agents
  • Lachrymators
    • cause tears and eye pain.
  • Sternutators / Vomiting agents
    • cause the victim to sneeze and / or vomit
riot control agents1
Riot – control Agents
  • Cause respiratory distress and tearing
  • Designed to incapacitate rather than kill.
  • Riot-control agents cause intense pain, especially in the moist areas of the body.
  • Common riot-control agents include
    • CS (also known as “tear” gas)
    • Capsicum (also called pepper spray).
riot control agents2
Riot – Control Agents


  • Irritated eyes, nose and throat.

Antidotes/First Aid:

  • Flush with cold water. Treatment by medical Doctor.
mechanical devices
Mechanical Devices
  • Terrorists “weapons of choice”
  • Can be:
    • Military munitions
    • Improvised explosive devices
  • Consider Secondary Devices
  • Considered high risk
mechanical devices1
Mechanical Devices
  • Most successful terrorist tool.
  • 70% of successful terrorism is through the use of BOMBS.
  • Incendiary devices are used in 25% of all bombings.
  • Explosions result in secondary hazards being formed, including poisonous gases and/or oxygen depleted or enriched atmospheres.
secondary devices
Secondary Devices
  • Anticipate multiple devices targeted at the first
  • responders.
  • Manage the scene effectively:
  • Establish exclusion zone of at least 1000’.
  • Set up functions 2000’ to 4000’ uphill, upwind
  • and behind protective cover.
  • Provide for rapid evacuation.
  • Searches should be conducted by qualified personnel.
b nice indicators
B-NICE Indicators

Environmental indicators:

  • Sick or dead animals, fish, or birds
  • Unscheduled spraying
  • Vapor clouds or mists
  • Absence of crops, wildlife, or insects
b nice indicators1
B-NICE Indicators

Environmental indicators:

  • Out of place and unattended packages, boxes, or vehicles
  • Packages that are leaking
  • Unusual materials or equipment
  • Small explosions that disperse liquids, mists, or gases
  • Unusual odors or tastes
b nice indicators2
B-NICE Indicators

Physical indicators:

  • Many casualties without signs of obvious trauma
  • Victims who are exhibiting similar symptoms
  • Large numbers seeking medical attention
preparing for terrorism
Preparing for Terrorism
  • Size - up
  • Assembling a disaster supply kit.
  • Identify a safe room and meeting place outside of the home or workplace.
  • Develop a family communication plan.
  • Learn shelter-in-place procedures.
shelter in place procedures
Shelter-in-Place Procedures
  • Shut off ventilation system.
  • Go to safe room with disaster supply kit.
    • Duct tape plastic sheeting over openings where outside air can come in.
    • Seal with duct tape other areas where air can come in.
    • Listen to battery-powered radio for all clear.
cert guiding principles
CERT Guiding Principles
  • Team safety is the number one priority.
  • Always do a thorough size-up.
    • Stop, look, listen, and think before taking any action.
      • What are the dangers?
      • What are team capabilities?
      • What are team limitations?
cert protocols
CERT Protocols
  • Terrorist incidents are a stop sign
  • Take in the whole area during the size-up
  • CERTs will be very limited in what they can do.
certs and terrorist incidents
CERTs and Terrorist Incidents
  • Any of the indications of a terrorist incident, you should:
    • Not touch it!
    • Move away from the object or area.
    • Report it to authorities.

Caution! Using cellular phones or two-way radios may detonate an explosive device!

self care during terrorist incidents
Self-Care During Terrorist Incidents

At the incident:

  • Limit exposure time.
  • Increase the distance from the hazard.
    • Move upwind and uphill
    • Rule of thumb
  • Add shielding.
basic decontamination procedures
Basic Decontamination Procedures
  • Leave the contaminated area.
  • Take decontamination action.
    • Remove everything.
    • Wash hands before using them to shower.
    • Shower or flush with cool water.
    • Blot dry.
  • Report for decontamination.
establishing zones

Wind Direction

“Cold Zone”Safe Area

“Warm Zone”Evacuation & Decontamination Area

“Hot Zone”


Contaminated Area

Establishing Zones
helpful hints

Helpful Hints

To Avoid Becoming A Terrorist Target

travel and terrorism
Travel and Terrorism


  • Refer to State Department web sites


  • Obtain addresses and phone numbers for Embassies/Consulates in countries you visit
  • Copy travel documents
    • Keep separate
  • Give a copy to family or friend not traveling with you
safe orientation
Safe Orientation
  • Carry a map at all times
  • Know your location of “Safe Havens” (Police, Fire, EMS, Hospitals, etc)
  • Mark them on your map prior to embarking on your trip
air travel
Air Travel
  • Allow extra time at airports for security
    • Always pack your own bags
  • Do not accept items others ask you to pack
  • Limit time in ticket area by traveling off peak hours
  • Limit time in unsecured concourse areas
    • i.e. Shopping or Eating areas
  • Report any suspicious bag or package seen
    • Move away from the object, notify security
  • Sit close to your assigned gate away from windows
on the aircraft
On The Aircraft
  • Request exit aisle seats or rear seats near aisle
  • Know where the exits are at all times
  • Hail your own taxis
  • Always request a taxi or shuttle that maintains appropriate credentials
  • Use hotel for reliable transportation sources
automobile travel
Automobile travel
  • Rental car; keep gas tank as full as possible
  • Park facing out, in order to pull out not back out
  • Circle car prior to entry, look for suspicious activity in your car or near you
  • Keep the windows up and doors locked
  • Travel on high traffic roads
  • Be cautious of slow moving vehicles or cars attempting to limit your movements
  • Check your rearview mirror frequently
  • If some is following you, proceed to one of the “Safe Havens” marked on your map
  • Vary the routes you travel
  • Obtain a room between the Second and Sixth floor
  • Enter and exit hotels at varied times and using varied entrances and exits
  • Know emergency exits and routes
  • Secure all personal documents in room safe or hotel safe
  • Keep ALL room keys with you at all times
  • Keep doors and windows locked at all times
  • Never open the door to unknown individuals
  • Wear nondescript clothing
  • Carry nondescript luggage
    • Careful about tags and stickers
  • Avoid the appearance of a tourist (carrying cameras, luggage, etc)
  • Carry all essential personal items with you at all times
    • Passport w/visa,
  • Carry or put in hotel safe
    • checkbook, credit cards, cash, undesirable ID (military, religious, associations, etc.)
  • Carry a piece of hotel stationary with you for address and phone number
  • When traveling with a group, stay together
  • Designate one or more meeting points to reunite
  • When in a place of public assembly, position yourself
    • away from windows
    • near exit
  • Know where the closest exit or cover is at all times
  • Avoid restaurants and social places that cater to Americans
  • If attack occurs, hit the ground- DO NOT RUN !
    • Lie on your stomach with your feet and knees together and soles facing the attack