Three years ago, our team was exposed to the High Threat CQB method during a four hour interactive demonstration. Afterwards, I had a conversation with our team's Tactical Commander. A decision was made at that time to adopt the method. He said it just made sense. Just like that, the direction of our team changed. With in months, we hosted a 2 day High Threat CQB course for our team. High Threat CQB has been our primary method ever since. What I find most intriguing is the simplicity of the method. It doesn't matter if it's a slow or stealth clear, search warrant, hostage rescue, or an active shooter situation, the fundamentals remain the same. The only thing that changes is the speed in which you operate and that is dictated by priority of life. The most common comment I hear about the method is exactly what our commander had said that first day. It just makes sense.
SOUTH METRO SWAT
I just wanted to thank you for the great training. It was exactly what I’ve been looking for. I’ve been lucky in my career in that I receive a fair amount of training. I’ve been the bad guy in many force on force drills, and during those drills I’ve always found it too easy to at least fight to a draw when officers flood into a room. That is just unacceptable. The High Threat Method addresses many of my concerns. Not only did I like the High Threat Method, but I liked your teaching methodology as well. Your both top notch instructors and I look forward to training with you again. I just hope it doesn’t take me three tries.
I have been poking around your website. In the Tactical Renegades blog there is a drill called the CQB 3D Drill. In August of 2012, during our Active Shooter training, I did a drill almost identical to that drill. I put eight targets in the room with the rationale that it was supposed to be a classroom full of kids. There was one or two threat targets, sometimes one hostage, sometimes one bomber. Officers made entry using a flood/strong point one wall method. I was looking at scanning and reaction times. My theory was that through practice, scanning and reaction times would decrease allowing officers to deal with threats faster. What I observed was that officers would make entry stopping a few steps into the doorway and begin scanning. They were fully exposed. It took two or more seconds before a shot was fired. There were a few occasions were non threat targets were shot. Officers said they felt pressured to make a quick assessment and fire because they were so exposed. At times hostages were shot even though officers tried to take a quick precision head shot at ten feet . On some occasions threats were missed or took an uncomfortably long time to address. One run was over five seconds, exposed the whole time. That drill served as another a-ha moment to show that against real violence, that stuff just doesn’t work. Had we been employing the High Threat Method all of those issues would have been addressed.
I recently attended the Intro to High Threat CQB course offered to IL officers through the ITOA. The course was an eye-opener and forced me to re-evaluate everything I've been taught to this point with regards to room-entry/clearing tactics and CQB. As I stated in the AAR, this the first time in training that as an officer, I was not 'shot' making entry into the room while facing armed resistance. While I know there are never any guarantees, I was impressed with how effective the tactics were and how long it has taken law enforcement to recognize such a 'natural' concept. Thank you again and I look forward to participating in future courses.
I work for a large metropolitan Sheriff's Office serving a county with a population of about one-half million. I am currently assigned as a team operator on our Emergency Services Unit. My team duties include team training as well as entry team.
I was initially trained in the high threat during a two-day course for our team. I have found that we have increased officer safety by clearing rooms "from the door". The team has applied this method in numerous force-on-force drills and I have seen fewer "bad guy" hits on team members. In addition, we have made a complete agency transition to using this technique as the standard searching and room clearing method with great success. Not to mention that our deputies feel safer and more comfortable clearing from the door rather than running in.
In addition to the tactical benefits the method provides, it just makes good sense. I have spent a significant amount of time studying human nature and natural reactions to sudden life and death encounters. Rushing into an unknown area with a potential threat is counter intuitive and against human nature. Asking a law enforcement officer to absorb that much information in the amount of time given and then process it to make good decisions is just not practical. Not to mention the benefits of access to officers who may go down. It is against our nature to go into a room with a known shooter even if it is to rescue someone. All the better to do our fighting from the door, making rescues and decision making easier and more effective and efficient.
In short, I have found that the high threat method will increase officer survivability and is flexible enough to be applied in any number of different situations. It is also easy to teach and provides a single technique or platform from which to base follow on skills.
Douglas County SWAT
I just completed a course offered in IL by this group, courtesy of the ITOA. They came out to provide a new methodology for CQB and room entry. Primary audience was SWAT members from local, state and federal agencies, with a wide array of experience. The course was well delivered, and a lot of information was put into two full days. My only complaint is that I wanted more, more, more. They presented some ideas that seriously challenged what I've been taught these past years with regards to Dynamic Entry and Room Clearing. A real eye-opener. I'm looking forward to their other classes.
Just saw your article in SWAT Digest to all of us on South Metro. I just wanted to let you know I read it, agree with it 100% and can attest to the effectiveness of your training methods. You are 100% correct in stating “old school SWAT tactics” of rushing/flooding a room are a bad idea, “most of the time.” As a Team Leader with South Metro, learning the CQB tactics you are advocating has definitely helped our team and our operators. As an older member, I can attest to stating the limited breach philosophy does make a hell of a lot more sense to me than what we were doing before.
Great article and most of all, thanks for taking the time to share YOUR knowledge with us, it is appreciated! Not only has it helped South Metro, but I, along with other LVPD members of South Metro have taken this back to our department and we teach this philosophy as a basis for how we train our UPB officers for building clears, etc.
The Office of Air & Marine provides air and marine interdiction support and assets throughout the U.S. and its territories. These units range in size and mission as varied as our country itself. Our agents typically operate in small teams from 1-4 agents, removed from assistance (offshore, wilderness, etc) or ARE the assistance (calvary). This often places lone or pairs of operators in position to work with non-organic teams. To accomplish this, the methods need to be simple, effective, and easily exportable under a wide range of applications. High Threat CQB is the perfect transition to HTC - High Threat Combatives. Unlike other systems, HTC applies and is scalable from the basic officer to the highly specialized operator. The speed at which our agents are able to grasp and employ this training speaks to the intelligence in the system - IT JUST MAKES SENSE. At the same time, it is scalable and easily testable. The agents see the results in Scenario Based Training.
I am part of a Special Response Team within the Dept of Homeland Security that operates solely from aircraft. Depending on the size of the aircraft used in our operations- the inserted team can range anywhere from 2 Agents to 20. We have found the high threat CQB technique taught to be the most versatile, and best received by our Agents. We have been exposed to a variety of CQB styles, via inter agency training or task specific courses at Xe. The technique is sound, and reflects the best elements of the techniques we have used to date. It is easy to employ effectively- regardless of team size. The technique does not require ad nauseum rehearsal and practice- which suits our team well, because CQB is not our primary task. Having completed the high threat CQB package- our Agents are comfortable with the procedure, and ready to execute if we are a team of 2 or squad of many.
Air Interdiction Agent
Bellingham Air & Marine Branch
"I thought the instruction was great, and even though we were outside of the linear range mindset in regards to safety, the instructor’s attention to safety was above reproach and at no time did I feel unsafe or see any safety violations. I will definitely be coming back for future classes."
L.H.- I.C.E Agent
"The training was top-notch and I would attend any of their trainings that I could. Thanks for getting this class brought here. Get as many here as you can."
"Being a retired Green Beret and a current security contractor I can say that this was one of the best if not the best course I have ever attended."
R.M. - Army Special Forces
"This was actually one of the best classes that I have had. The shooting was more challenging and involved more movement than most courses. I think it should be a requirement for any road officer and certainly for any tactical officer."
M.T. - ESU LT.
“This training just makes sense”
5-19th Special Forces Group
“You guys are saving cops' lives with what you do, keep up the great work