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3+2+1 = Check 6

BAGRAM AIRFIELD, Afghanistan -- To ensure Airmen can defend themselves where they live and work, every new 455th Air Expeditionary Wing member is enrolled in an active shooter/insider threat awareness program called Check 6.

Check 6 teaches Airmen to be aware of their surroundings at all times, and most importantly how to defend themselves and others in the event a hostile threat occurs.

The three main points of the course are:
3: You have three options. Fight, barricade or escape.
2: Two outcomes: live or die.
1: You have one chance to get it right.

The course consists of two phases. Phase one teaches Airmen about active shooters, as well as skills for weapon retention and how to ‘‘take back your weapon.” Phase two focuses on shooting, moving and communicating, as well as team tactics in an active shooter scenario.

“Before the weapons retention training, we make sure to educate the Airmen on the threat levels here at BAF. We go over different situations that could occur and then we do hands on training,” said Tech Sgt. Yamil Roman-Rivera, 455th Expeditionary Security Forces Squadron Check 6 program manager. “From the time they clear out their weapons, I make sure the Airmen are comfortable and familiar with their pistol or rifle.”

During training, Airmen are taught to keep an eye out for suspicious individuals and activity, be aware of their surroundings and to question and challenge things that are out of the ordinary.

“All Airmen here at BAF are defenders and first responders, not just Security Forces. If you see someone suspicious, you have the right to stop them and question them,” Roman-Rivera said. “If it’s something serious then you need to immediately call law enforcement and make sure you are very descriptive with what you tell them. If it’s a minor suspicion, alert your chain of command.”

Phase two of the training teaches Airmen how to perform as a team and use tactics.

“If an insider threat occurs here, we want Airmen to be able to trust and rely on each other to defend the base,” Roman-Rivera said. “The second block of the training focuses on how to move as a team, and it teaches them how to effectively communicate with one another in a hostile environment.”

Most Airmen who go through the course come out feeling more comfortable and confident when it comes to their weapons and the different techniques and tactics they’ve learned.

“This course was very educational. It taught me to be aware at all times and with all the drills we went over, and I can truly say I’m confident in defending myself and those around me,” said Senior Airman Andrew Moody, 455th Expeditionary Maintenance Squadron aircraft fuels system journeyman. “We’ll continue to practice drills around my shop just to get in the habit of knowing what to do if a situation arises. Check 6 really added on to that.”

To build upon what was learned and to keep their Airmen trained and ready for real-world situations, units are encouraged to conduct battle drills using their Workplace Defense Plan. Units can schedule exercises specific to their workplace and seek evaluation from the Check 6 program office for improvement.

“It’s essential for everyone to get that mindset that everyone is armed for a reason and you’ll be that non-traditional first responder to neutralize the threat,” Roman-Rivera said. “We’re all here together to defend the base.”

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