AFL Finals across Australia – preparations underway.

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For Melburnians, September means AFL Finals – Australian Rules Football at its best. But these days the final series extends right across Australia as AFL is now truly a National Code. In recent years Finals matches have been played in Perth, Adelaide, Sydney and Melbourne. The Grand Final remains the ultimate in crowd drawing fixtures. Each year no matter which teams are competing, the MCG looks at holding just on 100,000 people. This is an enormous crowd. Interstate Finals draw up to 50,000 people.

With changing circumstances worldwide, hostile Vehicle Attacks remain a possibility. Last year on Grand Final Day a young unlicensed driver drove his family’s small SUV sedan erratically up and down Swanston St and in a thoroughly threatening manner on the Swanston St – Flinders St intersection directly outside Melbourne’s major Transport Hub, Flinders St Station. Police acted decisively and no person was injured. The culprit was found to be severely, undiagnosed autistic teenager 16 years of age, dressed in camouflage fatigues carrying an extendable baton.

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This year there are likely to be Finals matches in Sydney, Perth, Adelaide and Melbourne. Over a five week period, culminating in the Grand Final in Melbourne held at the MCG. On the Friday before Grand Final, the annual Grand Final Parade will occur on the streets of Melbourne’s CBD.

Hostile Vehicle Mitigation is an item likely to be high on the various event’s organisers agendas. With thousands of people thronging in crowds to reach the game, it is good to be mindful of potential risks.

One of the best options is the Meridian Defence Group’s specially designed Crash Barriers.

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AML Risk Management are the Australian providers of the Meridian Defence Group’s Crash Barriers – the Archer 1200 system. The Archer 1200 system has been deployed here in Melbourne at the South Melbourne Market for the Mussels and Jazz Festival, as well as at several Anzac Day Commemoration events. These events attracted large pedestrian crowds. The Archer 1200 units provide real protection from hostile vehicles. A vehicle weighing 1.5 tonnes travelling at 30mph is stopped instantly and effectively by these barriers.

The Archer 1200 units can be easily deployed by one or two persons as well as demounted in the same manner.

With significant crowds gathering in places not specifically designed for crowd movement there is real need to protect such people from hostile vehicles.

To arrange a free no-obligation quotation or simply to facilitate an informational consultation please call 9326 2244 and ask for M/s Emerald Forrest, Hostile Vehicle Mitigation Supervisor or her colleague M/s Irene Rentifis. Emerald can provide an accurate assessment and analysis of your event’s exposure to hostile vehicle intrusion and recommend strategies to protect your event and its patrons.

AML Risk Management – for real Planning, Protection and Prevention.

 

Hostile Vehicle Attacks in the Northern Hemisphere

Many people have commented on Terrorist Attacks here on this page when mention of Hostile Vehicle Attacks is made. Simplistic responses such as the banning of ethnic or religious minorities, closing down immigration and punitive methodologies against those wearing religious garb have all been canvassed.

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Put simply none of these measures will prevent a hostile vehicle from causing Death or Injury. Active insurgents simply do not play by the rules. They do not announce their intentions or telegraph their beliefs. Quite simply they carry out their intended actions causing mass chaos, injury and destruction with absolutely no forward warning. The only thing that can effectively prevent such actions is a solid, well tested Hostile Vehicle Mitigation System – such as the Meridian Rapid Defence Group’s Archer 1200 Barriers. In Australia these units are available exclusively through AML Risk Management.

Take a look here at the relevant history of Hostile Vehicle Attacks in the Northern Hemisphere. There is a distinct pattern and it is evident that this is dependent on the physical accessibility of Europe and European cities to the Middle Eastern War Zones. The US and Canada are also high level targets. Australia is far more difficult for these groups but as recent events in Sydney with regard to Aviation prove – not impossible.

Terrorist Attacks by Vehicle Fast Facts

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Police evacuate Stockholm Central Train Station after a truck crashed into a department store injuring several people in Stockholm, Sweden, Friday April 7, 2017.

Editors Note: This is a selective list which only includes attacks involving civilians.

(CNN) Here is some background information on terror attacks involving vehicles used as deadly weapons by radicalized individuals or terror groups.

Facts:

Al Qaeda’s Yemeni branch encouraged its Western recruits to use trucks as weapons. A 2010 webzine article, “The Ultimate Mowing Machine,” called for deploying a pickup truck as a “mowing machine, not to mow grass but mow down the enemies of Allah.”

In September 2014, ISIS spokesman Abu Mohammad al-Adnani called for lone wolf attacks using improvised weaponry, “If you are not able to find an IED or a bullet, then single out the disbelieving American, Frenchman or any of their allies. Smash his head with a rock or slaughter him with a knife or run him over with your car or throw him down from a high place or choke him or poison him.”

Timeline:

March 3, 2006 – Mohammed Taheri-azar, an Iranian-American, drives an SUV into an area crowded with students at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Nine people sustain minor injuries during the attack, which Teheri-azar later says is retribution for the killing of Muslims overseas. He is convicted of attempted murder in 2008 and is sentenced to 33 years in prison.

October 22, 2014 – A three-month old girl and an Ecuadorian tourist are killed when a driver swerves into a crowd at a light rail station in Jerusalem. The driver, Abdel Rahman al-Shaludi is shot and killed by police. Israeli media reported he published militant writing on Facebook and supported Hamas, a fundamentalist Islamic group that has conducted attacks in Gaza and the West Bank, but his family denied he supported Hamas or any terror organization.

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July 14, 2016 – After a Bastille Day fireworks display in Nice, France, a man drives a 20-ton rental truck into the crowd, striking and killing 86 people. The attacker, Mohamed Lahouaiej Bouhlel, 31, a Tunisian national, drives nearly a mile on the beachfront promenade before he is shot and killed by authorities. French officials say Bouhlel seemed to become radicalized “very quickly” by ISIS propaganda before the attack. He also suffered from mental illness, according to his father.

November 28, 2016 – At Ohio State University, 11 people are injured when a student, Abdul Razak Ali Artan, 18, carries out a car and knife attack. A campus police officer shoots and kills Artan, whom police believe was inspired by ISIS and the radical cleric, Anwar al-Awlaki.

December 19, 2016 – A Tunisian man drives a tractor trailer into a Christmas market in Berlin, killing 12 people. In the wake of the attack, authorities conduct a manhunt for Anis Amri, 24, throughout Europe. He is shot and killed by police in Milan, Italy, four days after the attack. Hours after Amri dies, ISIS releases a video of him pledging allegiance to the terrorist group.

March 22, 2017 – A man drives an SUV into a crowd on the sidewalk along the Westminster Bridge in London, killing at least four. After ramming the car into a barrier outside the House of Parliament, the driver exits the vehicle and stabs a police officer to death. The attacker is then gunned down by a police officer. The assailant, Khalid Masood, 52, of West Midlands, reportedly had a criminal record and may have had connections to violent extremism, British Prime Minister Theresa May says.

April 7, 2017 – Four people are killed, when a truck drives into pedestrians on a busy street in the center of Stockholm, Sweden, before crashing into a department store. A fifth victim dies from her injuries three weeks later. The attacker, Rakhmat Akilov, a 39-year-old from Uzbekistan, admitted to carrying out a “terrorist crime,” his lawyer says. Akilov is later sentenced to life in prison.

June 3, 2017 – Eight people are killed in two terror attacks in central London before police shoot three suspects dead, the Metropolitan police say. The violence begins when a van swerves into throngs of pedestrians on London Bridge. The suspects then jump out the van and proceed on foot to nearby Borough Market, a popular nightlife spot, where witnesses say they produce knives and slash indiscriminately at people in restaurants and bars. At least 48 people are taken to hospitals, according to the London Ambulance Service.

June 19, 2017 – Just after midnight, a van plows into a group of pedestrians who had attended late-night prayers at London’s Finsbury Park Mosque, killing one man and injuring 11 people. The driver is arrested at the scene for attempted murder and further held on suspicion of terrorism offenses. The suspect is later identified as Darren Osborne, 47, a resident of Cardiff in Wales, according to multiple UK media outlets. Osborne is later sentenced to life imprisonment with a minimum term of 43 years.

August 16-18, 2017 – At least 13 people are killed and about 100 are injured on August 17th after a van plows through a crowd of people in a popular tourist district in Barcelona, Spain. Two suspects are arrested, but the driver gets away, according to police. ISIS’ media wing, Amaq, issues a statement claiming responsibility, saying that the attackers are “soldiers of the Islamic State.” On August 18th, in Cambrils, a coastal city around 100 kilometers from Barcelona, five attackers drive an Audi A3 into several pedestrians, killing one. The attackers are shot and killed by police. A house explosion on August 16th, in Alcanar, south of Barcelona, is also believed to be connected to the attacks.

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September 30-October 1, 2017 – On September 30 in Edmonton, Canada, a man purposely strikes a police officer with a white Chevrolet Malibu before jumping out of the vehicle, stabbing the officer several times with a knife and fleeing on foot. There is an ISIS flag in the car, which is later seized as evidence. Just before midnight that same day, a police officer stops a U-Haul truck at a checkpoint and recognizes the driver’s name as similar to that of the Chevrolet’s registered owner. The U-Haul truck then speeds off towards downtown Edmonton. During the chase, the truck deliberately attempts to hit pedestrians in crosswalks and alleys, injuring at least four pedestrians. Abdulahi Hasan Sharif, 30, a Somali refugee, is later charged with five counts of attempted murder, dangerous driving, criminal flight causing bodily harm and possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose.

October 31, 2017 – Eight people are killed and almost a dozen injured when a 29-year-old man in a rented pickup truck drives down a busy bicycle path near the World Trade Center in New York. The captured suspect has been identified as Sayfullo Habibullaevic Saipov. Authorities found a note near the truck used in the incident, claiming the attack was made in the name of ISIS, a senior law enforcement official said.

Source: cnn.com

In Australia it has been mentally unstable individuals who have caused damage, loss of life and injury. It is immaterial as to why someone acts so, the real issue is prevention and the protection of human life.

The Meridian Archer 1200 system is adaptable to many informal and casual street gatherings and large temporary crowds. Read about it here.

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It is portable, yet effective and can be deployed by one or two people.

Call now on 03 9326 2244 and ask for Emerald Forrest, our hostile vehicle Mitigation Services Coordinator, for a free no-obligation consultation. or leave your details here and one of our operatives will get back to you promptly.

Choose AML Risk Management and the Meridian Rapid Defence Group’s Archer 1200.

Planning, Protection, Prevention. It’s the AML Risk Management program. Strategise to Protect and Prevent.

 

Hostile Vehicle Mitigation. What constitutes a Hostile Vehicle?

 

meridian-crash-barriers-3The answer is simple. Any vehicle being driven in such a way to cause death or injury to others – deliberately – can be deemed a hostile vehicle.

Where Hostile Vehicle Mitigation strategies come into play are in the areas where large groups of people gather – pedestrian malls, events, protests, seasonal shopping crowds.

Hostile Vehicle Mitigation can be of a permanent nature – bollards, both fixed and hydraulic or temporary – Crash Barrier systems installed prior to events, gatherings and large crowds, removed after such events.

The Meridian Archer 1200 portable Vehicle Mitigation Barriers is one such system. In Australia AML Risk Management deploy this system and ensure crowd safety. This year the system has been used effectively at the South Melbourne Market Mussel and Jazz Festival which blocked off Cecil St between Coventry St and York St for 2 days on the 10th and 11th of March.

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The units are placed prior to the event and can effectively stop a vehicle of 1.5 tonnes travelling at 48km/h.

The need for such systems was demonstrated last week in Indonesia where Motorcycles and Scooters breached church entrances and Police Station entrances carrying suicide bombers. There was an appalling loss of life.

So certainly there are concerns with regard to ISIS terrorists, in Australia, but this is a much bigger concern in Indonesia where radicals have based themselves for decades.

Here events like Anzac Day Ceremonies have been targeted by radicalised youths but not affected as yet. This year AML positioned the Archer 1200 Portable Vehicle Mitigation systems at Anzac Ceremonies in Victoria as a precaution.

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The real tragedies that have occurred here in Melbourne have all been predicated by mentally disturbed perpetrators. That being said, it is certainly wise to ensure the safety of any public gathering, sports event or street festival with a sensible well devised Hostile Vehicle Mitigation plan.

AML Risk Management are well positioned to provide a full consultancy and implementation of such a program for any interested parties.

Meridian Rapid Defense Group           Anti-Vehicle Barriers

Call now on 03 9326 2244 and book an appointment for further information or leave your details here and one of our operatives can assist you in developing an effective plan to ensure the safety of your event.

Remember with AML Risk Management proper Planning Prevents and Protects.

AML Risk Management – First in Hostile Vehicle Mitigation