Law Enforcement Technology

JUN 2019

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How to Overcome Target Location Labeling Problems in Prolonged Incidents Not all buildings are boxes. Count for irregularities in your operational plan to avoid miscommunication and officer confusion. Where building labeling becomes a challenge is when it's irregularly shaped and has floors below ground on one side but above ground on other sides. As above, so below When you're trained to label sides, windows and doors, what level they are on is often minimally discussed. As a result, many rookies assume that the first floor is floor one, the second floor is floor two and so on. That quickly falls apart when you're dealing with, for example, a con- dominium structure with one or more levels below street level. The ground floor, what would be the first floor from the front entrance view, might be the second or third level from the back parking lot. Such a challenge isn't apparent until officers on the perimeter start discussing the fourth floor while only three are visible from the front. In general, for structures under ten stories tall•from the front entrance level or street level•you label the lev- els from the top down. That means that the highest floor in the building is level one, numbering down from there. Depending on the structure and terrain, you might have ten levels from that front entrance street view, but 11, 12 or even 13 from the sides or back. For structures over ten stories tall•as counted from the street level front entrance•it's probably best to use the labeling you can find on the elevator panel. Residential structures can be very different from commercial and office buildings. W hat you can see from the front, sides or rear may not be all there is. Account for below ground somewhere in your opera- tional plan. You could have a three story shopping mall with two levels of parking, both below ground. If you M ost officers get taught how to label a building in set- ting up a perimeter in basic academy. The structure described is usually four-sided, a single story with doors and windows. For that very reason, virtually every SWAT team in the nation trains members in target building labeling for reference. Teams have determined the most common types of buildings in their areas and the most common types of target buildings they respond to or serve high risk warrants in. These don't have to be the same thing. New York City may be full of high-rises but their emergency ser- vices teams usually don't have to train to take an entire building but typically handling a single floor and expanding operations coverage to one or two floors above and below the target. 10 OFFICER MEDIA GROUP | ACTIVE SHOOTER RESPONSE 2019 Image provided by Armor Express Inc. Active Shooter RESPONSE

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