By MAUREEN ROSE
Gold Standard Acting Editor
August is the month when the Army highlights Antiterrorism Awareness/Safety. The Kentucky Department of Transportation and Fort Knox will host a community outreach program tomorrow at the Exchange parking lot from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Personnel from the Fort Knox Antiterrorism Office will have an information table to highlight the Army’s annual Antiterrorism theme.
“We stress awareness training all year round, not just in August,” said Willie Thomas with the antiterrorism operations office.
The Army’s “See Something—Say Something” slogan is a real benefit because it’s a low-cost way that proves effective in deterring or disrupting a situation that might become violent. The i-Watch campaign is also helpful because the theme strengthens the overall safety and awareness in the community.
“You know better than anyone else what is the usual activity and equipment for your work place,” Thomas added. “You’re the expert on your shop; if you believe some-thing is suspicious—call it in.”
By educating the Fort Knox population—Soldiers, Family members, retirees, civilians and contractors—the entire community benefits.
Thomas explained that some people are lulled into a false sense of security because they’re on Fort Knox and believe that it’s just as secure as the Gold Vault. He asked everyone on Fort Knox to remember the four “S’s” that should alert you to a problem:
Surveillance: If you see someone taking photos, drawing sketches or asking for information that they are not entitled too, don’t be afraid to report it.
Solicitation: Someone who asks for information about security procedures or the location of alarms might be planning violence.
Security: When a security response is triggered—such as pulling a fire alarm—it could be that someone is observing evacuation routes or gauging how long it takes for emergency personnel to respond.
Supplies: Gathering illegal or large quantities of legal supplies, explosives, chemicals or something as disconcerting as a fragmentation vest—all those are signs that someone might be planning violence against others, whether it be personal or for a cause.
As a way to help educate the community, the outreach event (tomorrow) will feature many of the Fort Knox partners in safety, security and antiterrorism: the Installation Operations Center, AAFES, the Kentucky Department of Transportation, which will be providing an inebriation simulator; Directorate of Emergency Services, Ireland Army Community Hospital, Knox Hills, Red Cross, Army Community Service and others.
“This event is open to the community,” Thomas added. “We want everyone—Soldiers, Family members, retirees and contractors—to be more aware of possible suspicious activities. We’ll all be stronger with information sharing.”