Getting tough on crime, a combined affair

2015-10-13 06:00
Photos: supplied
Enforce takes a zero-tolerance approach to crime in Hillcrest.

Photos: supplied Enforce takes a zero-tolerance approach to crime in Hillcrest.

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ENFORCE Security recently took its tactical use of firearms for emergency response – Tuffer – course to the Hillcrest Park Neighbourhood Watch tactical team and the Hillcrest Park Security Alliance, a move aimed at equipping the dedicated volunteers with skills to use when on patrol.

Enforce devised and introduced the Tuffer course at the beginning of the year following the almost-fatal shooting of reaction officer Dino Moodley in Umhlanga last year.

Moodley had come under fire while responding to a robbery in progress, and even though he was shot three times – one bullet tore through his femoral artery in his thigh – he managed to drag himself to the safety of his car to call for help, while returning fire.

Enforce operations manager Shane Thompson said it was then decided that it was necessary to give the company’s reaction officers further skills training in order to equip them with the know-how in dangerous situations.

Thompson explained that he and Dudley Booyens – Enforce’s firearm course trainer – came up with the Tuffer course to teach the officers how to react when they came under fire.

The course also covers house penetration, getting out of a vehicle while under fire, basic bush work and tracking, taking cover under fire, and how to react in a hand-grenade attack.

“We felt it was crucial to offer our officers these abilities and skills in order to keep both themselves and our clients safe. We then awarded these officers with certificates and badges signifying the completion of the course.”

Thompson said Enforce then offered the course to the Hillcrest security volunteers and neighbourhood watches to equip them with the same survival skills.

“We use a paint-ball range in Hillcrest which is made up of broken down houses where we teach them skills relating to how to enter a house safely; another is in an alley where there are particular places to take cover and they are taught to move between cover while under fire, and the third is a bush course in which we teach them how to look for signs that suspects have entered or been through a particular path in the bush.

“We also teach them how to approach a bush area and react if they come under fire,” he said.

In addition to the skills learned, the Tuffer course also gave alliance members and Enforce reaction officers the opportunity to team-build.

Upper Highway resident and Enforce community projects manager Nikki Mohlmann said: “We have found that more residents are working with SAPS and their security companies to make a difference.

“Our Tuffer course was a team-building exercise and gave the men an opportunity to meet like-minded residents from other areas as well as to learn basic skills that anyone on the road should know. It is fine for these men to be there assisting communities, but do they know what to do, if for any reason, they come under attack. Now they will have this knowledge.”

Shaun Lyle, Hillcrest Park Neighbourhood Watch chairman, expressed his appreciation to Enforce for hosting the event.

“We thoroughly enjoyed ourselves, despite the pain inflicted by paint balls travelling at 300 fps and then at close range of three to 10 metres. ‘Blue Camo’, being the preferred choice of suspects, was the uniform for the day.

“It was a great experience, and an opportunity for members to reconnect and for Alliance partners and reaction officers to work together, all this while building capacity and the skill sets that are becoming increasingly critical for living.

“To Dudley and Sizwe, our expert instructors, we salute you.”

Lyle said that while golf days were the “name of the game” elsewhere, combat games were the “order of the day” in Hillcrest.

“As we say in Hillcrest Park, the ‘enforce’ is strong with us.”

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