THE MAGAZINE

A Law Enforcement and Security Officers' Guide to Responding to Bomb Threats

By Jim Smith; Reviewed by Glen Kitteringham, CPP

***** A Law Enforcement and Security Officers’ Guide to Responding to Bomb Threats: Providing Working Knowledge of Bombs, Preparing for Such Incidents, and Performing Basic Analysis of Potential Threats, Second Edition. By Jim Smith; published by Charles C. Thomas Publisher Ltd., www.ccthomas.com (Web); 192 pages; $29.95.
 
Of all the issues that law enforcement and security personnel face, bomb threats are often the most challenging. The complexity of the threat and its potential for death, damage, and injury require acute understanding to take the best actions to neutralize or mitigate the threat. Security and law enforcement personnel can all expect to deal with an explosive incident, or the threat thereof, at some point in their career.
 
In this text, author and career law enforcement officer Jim Smith details the many issues that must be considered in responding to explosive threats, organizing the material in a logical, easy-to-understand fashion. This text is comprehensive but succinct enough not to intimidate the reader. Nineteen short chapters highlight topics including risk assessment, searches, evacuations, operational security, and threats in environments like schools and healthcare facilities.
 
It is gratifying that the author has put security and law enforcement personnel on an equal footing in his text. While it covers some issues security personnel are unlikely to deal with, like illegal drug laboratories and logistical support for bomb squads, other topics addressed in this book will benefit both groups equally. This text could serve as a good introduction to the subject for those new to bomb threat management and as a good refresher for the experienced responder.
 

Reviewer: Glen Kitteringham, CPP, has worked in the security industry since 1990 and is director of security and life safety for Brookfield Properties. He holds a master’s degree in security and crime risk management from the University of Leicester. He is past chair of the ASIS Commercial Real Estate Council and the ASIS regional vice president for Canada.

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