In the past few days, the Emergency Management and Response—Information Sharing and Analysis Center (EMR-ISAC) observed that fire and police stations were attacked by gun fire. Although no one was injured, these incidents raise concern about physical and personnel security at facilities occupied by emergency responder departments and agencies.
To address this concern, the EMR-ISAC examined various sources to identify the basic measures of a time-efficient, cost-effective, and common-sense approach to bolster security in and around first responder stations. The following is a summary of preventive actions for the consideration of Emergency Services Sector leaders responsible for personnel and any type of physical location:
- Inspect randomly the security and condition of all facilities and storage areas.
- Keep all doors and windows closed and locked as much as practicable.
- Use appropriate locking systems for all station access points.
- Obtain a monitored intrusion detection system for locations not always occupied and in regular use.
- Prohibit sharing security codes or combinations with unauthorized persons.
- Change security codes or combinations at frequent intervals.
- Guarantee vehicles, apparatus, and equipment at exterior sites are always locked when unattended.
- Initiate and enforce a reliable identification system for department personnel and property.
- Screen all visitors and vendors and deny entry to anyone who refuses inspection.
- Develop inspection practices for incoming deliveries including postal packages and mail.
- Require personnel within the station to be vigilant for unauthorized persons and unusual activities.
- Prepare and enforce an SOP containing physical and personnel security measures at facilities.
For more information, see the Five Step Process and the crucial principles (deterrence, detection, delay, response, recovery, and re-assessment) at the Integrated Physical Security Handbook. Another pertinent source is the National Strategy for the Physical Protection of Critical Infrastructures and Key Assets (PDF, 1.3 Mb)