By Ron Mullins and Thom Bolsch


Whether you are out shopping, at a holiday party, dinner with the family our even at church; today we are at a higher threat level than in the past.

We have had several incidences recently where the public has been attacked in what would be considered relatively secure venues.  

Physical violence does exist. It can materialize anywhere we might be.

As the holidays approach and more people will be in public, the potential for violent attack rises.

In consideration of today’s environment, have you changed how you provide for your personal safety and the safety of your family?

The primary consideration is: DO NOT let these incidents impede or restrict the life you want to live.  REFUSE TO LET FEAR PREVAIL.  And don’t let someone else prevent you from living.

To live, we must venture beyond the castle wall; and we must be watchful of the threat and be ready to respond.

We have preached that an awareness of happenings around you is ninety percent of your safety protocol.  Paying attention to your surroundings and taking action when the hairs on the back of your neck stand on end is the best way to keep you and your family safe.  So let’s review the basics of what you see while paying attention, and build on that.

Some of us walk through life unconsciously looking for things.  We notice and acknowledge normal and emergency exits, fire extinguishers, AEDs, open pathways, and strange/erratic actions by others to name a few.  As we walk through life, we have our heads up looking and our hands free ready to react.  In contrast to having our hands wrapped around a cell phone at the waist staring towards the ground into a mind numbing digital screen.  Consider how often you seen someone staring at their phone and bump into someone else or a stationary object?

Let’s put the distractions away and observe.  Look where you are heading as well as to your sides and above.  See, and be aware of your surroundings. Stop on occasion and look where you’ve been.

Most importantly; DO NOT BE SURPRISED!  Know what is behind you; and what is out of place!

Although this is not an all-inclusive list, here are a few things to be watching for while in public: 

  • Pace and flow of people.  Steady and directional or increased tempo and erratic?
  • Background noise.  Normal din of people, or staccato and higher pitched (screaming)?
  • Where are exits, cover, or concealment?  Can you side step the rush of people?  Can you barricade your exit once through?
  • If there is security, do you see them?  When did you last see one?
  • Are there tools nearby that can be used for protection or medical emergency?  If you have to take action, are there materials you can use?
  • Remember the details.  If called upon by authorities, be a good witness.
  • Finally.  Do you engage? Do you lead the response?

There is a lot to consider; but it’s not “Super Hero” stuff!  It’s regular tasks and actions that the average person can undertake to stay safe, keep the innocent around them safe and provide assistance to law enforcement as necessary.

Naturally, this is just scratching the surface; but it’s designed to get you to engage, learn and practice.  Take a Protecting The Innocent class from Saddle River Range and keep learning.

Stay Alert, Stay Safe,


© Copyright 2017 Ron Mullins and Thom Bolsch

All rights reserved.