Protection Engineering Consultants uses risk-based design approaches to adequately mitigate the consequences of armed aggressor, active shooter, and marauding terrorist firearms attack (MTFA) scenarios.
Computational modeling is used to quantify occupant egress times and identify potential ‘choke-points’, in order to inform architectural, structural, and operational design. These simulations in support of physical security assessments or design are conducted as follows:
- Site Layout – Structural drawings, architectural layouts, site plans, and available BIM/GIS data is used to develop a three-dimensional model of the site incorporating important obstructions for egress calculations.
- Egress Model Development – An egress model is developed wherein building occupants are represented and a credible threat scenario is selected. Occupants are referred to as ‘agents’ and are populated with a set density throughout the site (interior and exterior locations).
- Risk Assessment – Occupant risk is evaluated using an assessment of the time taken for individual agents to evacuate the premises and avoid the armed aggressor(s), active shooter(s), or marauding terrorist(s). Consideration of the potential benefits of forced-entry/ballistic resistant (FE/BR) doors within the simulation is also possible.
- Choke Point Identification – During mass egress of a facility by occupants, building and site geometry can result in a large volume of occupants moving through confined spaces and small openings. This results in ‘choke points’, which inhibit egress and are critical to capture in an armed aggressor assessment. Using the agent-based system discussed here, such features may be captured with reasonable accuracy and their relative significance may be evaluated.
PEC can also support the development of mitigation measures for such scenarios which may allow occupants to shelter in-place, and/or provide specific egress systems that allow expedited options to exit. For more information on PEC’s efforts to mitigate and defeat armed aggressor, active shooter, and marauding terrorist firearms attack (MTFA) scenarios, contact Eric Sammarco, PhD, PE.