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7 Ways to Keep Your Family Safe During a Terror Attack

By    |   Monday, 20 November 2017 12:13 PM

Last year, America experienced more deaths from extremist attacks than any other year since the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, Newsweek reported recently, citing the Institute of Economics and Peace’s most recent Global Terrorism Index Report.

While there’s still no absolute definition of terrorism, the Collins English Dictionary describes it as “the use of violence, especially murder and bombing, in order to achieve political aims or to force a government to do something."

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There’s no doubt that finding yourself in such a situation could be terrifying. Here’s a look at how you can keep your family safe during a terror attack:

1. Know the seven signs of terrorism — While it isn’t always possible to predict an attack, Safety.com reports that the Metropolitan Transportation Authority of New York has developed a list, now used by police across America, to help citizens recognize potential attacks before they happen:

  • Surveillance: Somebody planning an attack may first monitor activity in the area. Be on the lookout for someone taking suspicious notes, drawing diagrams, or using recording devices.
  • Elicitation: Similarly, a potential terrorist may try to elicit information about military operations, either face to face, over the telephone, or via email.
  • Security tests: Potential terrorists will want to know the security strengths and weaknesses of their target. Be on the lookout for someone trying to record and analyze security reaction time.
  • Acquiring supplies: Any purchases of large amounts of explosives should be a red flag, but any suspicious purchase of controlled items like uniforms, flight manuals, or badges should be reported to authorities immediately.
  •  Suspicions persons: While it’s natural to be wary of unfamiliar faces in your neighborhood, you should look out for people who look out of place at work or school.
  • Dry or trial run: A potential terrorist will want to test their attack method and civilians should look out for suspicious people seeming to wander aimlessly.
  • Deploying assets: Terrorists tend to get their supplies in place before an attack. If you notice strange activity, be safe and report it to authorities.

2. Know your local disaster plans — The easiest way to stay safe during any emergency is to know the disaster plans for your community, workplace, and school. Most terrorist attacks occur in a public space, so be sure you know how to evacuate.

Survivalist Prepper suggests creating an emergency plan for your family. The Red Cross adds that you should predetermine a meeting point in the event of an emergency and make sure your family all have each other’s contact details, as well as the details of an “out of town” relative.

3. Build an emergency supply kit — An emergency supply kit is a good idea in any disaster situation. Sometimes referred to as a “bug out bag,” your kit should contain enough supplies to last you and your family a couple of days.

According to Safety.com, your kit should include nonperishable food, water, a battery-powered radio, extra flashlights, and batteries. The Red Cross suggests adding some “shelter in place” supplies like duct tape and plastic sheeting and making sure your kit includes any medications you or your family may need. 

Save the Children recommends that parents learn CPR and First Aid so they can treat children as quickly as possible.

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4. Stay informed — Besides listening to the radio or watching television to learn your community’s public warning system, HuffPost says you should never take public warnings lightly and should stay home if you hear news of an attack in your area.

U.K. newspaper The Express reports that you should always check government websites before traveling to make sure you’re aware of potential attack “hot spots."

Keeping an eye on local media will also give you an indication if you need to evacuate your home for some reason.

5. Stay calm — Although easier said than done, the Red Cross says it’s important to keep a clear head so you can focus in an emergency situation and implement your prepared strategies.

Survivalist Prepper adds that you may want to keep quiet. The idea is to make yourself invisible so you can escape the situation as quickly as possible.

6. Be alert and aware of your surroundings — Save the Children says you should always move if you feel uncomfortable and teach your children to tell you if they feel the same or notice something suspicious.

HuffPost suggests keeping an eye out for unattended packages and bags and try to scout possible exits when you enter a new building.

7. Always follow the advice of local emergency officials — No matter how much emergency training you have, your local officials will know the area and situation best. Heed their advice.

Be sure to keep your smartphone or radio charged so you can catch any important warnings or instructions from local authorities.

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Last year, America experienced more deaths from extremist attacks than any other year since the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, Newsweek reported recently, citing the Institute of Economics and Peace’s most recent Global Terrorism Index Report.
ways, keep, family, safe, terror, attack
Monday, 20 November 2017 12:13 PM
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