Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Home Defense Drills

Final installment in the Home Invasion series. I am not trying to provide a full home defense and firearm course here, just some quick notes to remind and point the way for further study. And I want to focus this forum more on general survival rather than making it yet another weapon-brandishing Jerry Ahern dream-come-true blog. With all the drills which follow you need to practice enough so that your body will have the instinctive memory needed to react automatically in a crisis. This doesn't mean daily hours of practice, it does mean doing some training every week or so. For example, I practice my moving and aiming a couple times a week for 3 minutes per session using a orange gun to “draw down on” objects in my home.

Here in Montana we haven't had a bad home invasion problem per se, but with our vast spaces there can be prolonged delays in getting police to our homes. With a worsening Hopey Changey economy, crime will increase here too. For example, if there was a home invasion burglary going down in Augusta and the resident deputy was off on a call it could take over half an hour or more for a deputy to get there from Helena or Lincoln. Death or rape can happen within seconds. The police will arrive to take a report from any lucky survivors.

Having piles of guns and ammo for after the collapse is great, if you know how to use it. Counting on the much vaunted adrenaline rush, alone, to enable you to carry the day might cost you your life. Using your gun in the event without prior practice might lead to tragedy if you can't hit what you aim at.

Before you start practicing mouse holing, dynamic room entry, and house clearing you need to have a good base of familiarity with your chosen gun or other weapon. You need to know how to quickly and efficiently draw it from your holster rig, be able to fire it with a reasonable balance of speed and accuracy at realistic ranges:handgun: 1-10yd shotgun: 1-50yd (for slugs), rifle: 5 to limit of your need.

You must practice moving and firing; the bad guys don't hold still like range targets, they move and/or shoot at you. You must practice this until you can again be reasonably accurate even while you move off the enemy's line of fire. Also, it is vital that you be able to immediately and effectively respond to your gun jamming or not going “bang” in a crisis situation, or you are dead. In addition, you must be able to identify your target as friend or foe, even in low light conditions. Code word challenges and responses must be worked out ahead of time so that you can avoid inadvertently shooting a family member.

Some basic principles for setting up your house to prevail in a home invasion. Have weapons pre -positioned, out of sight, throughout the house so you and yours have a good chance of becoming tool using survivor wherever you retreat or are dumped (by robbers). Consider having a Wedge-It by the front door so you can slide it along with the door when you open it a few inches to talk to a stranger. This way, if the stranger(s) try a push-in invasion, the Wedge-It will jam the door within a few inches of travel, startling the robbers and giving the good guys a couple extra seconds to react.

Have a safe room set up and have all family members drill on quickly getting there and securing the room. Impress on your kids that if scary people break in that the kids need to be absolutely quiet sometime even though they are very scared. Know ahead of time what role family pets will have; what to do if the invaders torture your pet to get you to make a mistake, use your dog to delay the invaders, pet goes to safe room also?

Have a plan for getting house keys out to the police if an invasion happens and you are holed up in your safe room. Work out a hostage family member drill out before you need it! See below for some suggestions in this regard.

A vital part of prevailing is practicing with the winning attitude and demeanor. Channel Mel Gibson as Mad Max ( ) , emulate Charles Bronson in Death Wish (, method act Camille Keaton from I Spit on Your Grave ( ). This way your commands and responses to the bad guys will demonstrate your determination and courageous spirit.

No: “don't make me shoot” or “don't hurt us, please”. It's: “if you do anything other than what I tell you, I will shoot you. Got it it ,entiende, comprè?” and “Kill, Kill, Kill!” Remember, criminals don't fear your gun, it's just a piece of metal, they fear the person behind the gun if that person appears resolute. Those criminals lost the right to mercy when they invaded your home; you must go down fighting to win. Complying with invaders commands nearly always results in serious harm or death for the good guys. This is not the U.N.; you resist or you die.

Basic home invasion drills:

  1. Good proficiency with your weapons: move and aim, target identification (vital: practice in low light also), weapon malfunction.

  2. Push in” invasion (door answered, robbers push their way in): Retrieving weapons and aiming, kids retreat to safe room? Close quarter combat evasion drills. Know who has what role (one always answers door, other always covers?)

  3. Hostage drill: Extremely grave situation. Maybe you and the hostage family member live, maybe you die. But at least you try to prevail. Ideas: hostage drops, full force, to the floor when family member gives code word; then other family member takes out bad guy as the hostage moves clear of impact area. Hostage feigns illness, other family member takes action. Hostage taker threatens to kill hostage if you don't hand over/drop your gun. You tell them:” kill them, then I'll kill you slowly, I'll make you last” (Dexter or R. Lee Ermey emulation helps with this one).

  4. Bedroom Invasion Drill: fast access to weapons with team coverage of all openings if possible. Practice accessing weapons from anywhere in the room. First aid drills for gun shot wounds or knife wounds. Practice 911 calls, with disconnected phone, giving full report of what's happening, who good guys are and how they are dressed.

  5. Alarm goes off: If a central system, consider having control panel in sleeping quarters so you can identify breached zone. Otherwise, someone has to go to the display panel to determine where the breach is; very scary prospect and fraught with danger. If you have individual zone alarms, try to vary their alarm sound to give you an idea of where the problem is. Do you lock down if the alarm goes off?

  6. Noises by garage or in back yard: searchlight area? Searchlight then investigate? What to do if it is just rowdy teens? What if you detected incoming invasion and they fire on you?

  7. Post-disaster siege: How to lift siege; sortie? Plan your fields of fire ahead of time to enable you to pick off besiegers. Night sortie to relief? Exfiltrate a family member to get help? Nasty command-fired, BATF no-no devices?

Have fun with this stuff. The more you rehearse, the better your performance when the real thing comes.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Teach your children the difference between the fire and the break in alarm. We taught our children if it's a fire break out the window and get out, if it's a breakin, don't come running into the rest of the house instead climb under the bed and don't come out until we or the police give them the ok. Reason: If I have my gun drawn I don't want them to possibly run into my line of fire or into a hostage situation.

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