Case Study | 8.8.2017

Understanding and Mitigating the Impact of Global Terrorism

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Risk Mitigation

Protective Design

Key Capabilities

Blast and Impact Design

Research and Testing


Faced with the highly complex and dynamic state of global terrorism, PEC supports the protection of people, systems and infrastructure.

The Institute for Economics & Peace releases an annual report that provides a comprehensive summary of the key global trends and patterns in terrorism. Here are some of the key findings from the 2016 report:

  • There has been a 550% increase in the number of deaths of private citizens from terrorism since 2000.
  • The global economic impact of terrorism reached US$89.6 billion in 2015
  • Over half of all attacks on civilians use bombings and explosions, followed by armed assaults which are used in roughly 20% of attacks
  • In Europe, ISIL’s transnational tactics in combination with lone actor attacks inspired by the group drove an increase in terrorism to its highest levels ever.
  • Bombing/explosions resulted in 43.2% of the global economic impact from terrorism in 2015

How can PEC Help?

PEC performs design, research, and assessments to protect people, systems and infrastructure from the threat posed by global terrorism. We work in partnership with:

  • Architects, Engineers, and Contractors
  • Infrastructure Owners and Operators
  • Security professionals
  • Product Developers and Manufacturers
  • Government and Non-Government Organizations

Protective Design

We support infrastructure design across several sectors including commercial buildings, heavy/light industry, data centers, and transportation assets (e.g., bridges, airports, and rail).  Our objective is to always preserve aesthetics and function while maximizing protection. We integrate blast/explosion shielding, forced entry and ballistic resistant hardening, structural disproportionate collapse requirements, and other protections – all with minimal intrusion into the visual appeal and functional requirements of the infrastructure.

Research & Testing

Our engineers lead research into new hazards and vulnerabilities, find or develop new protections against terrorist weapons, and adapt existing materials to optimize their protective properties.  Recent research programs have focused on the response of glazed building facades to terrorist bombing, long-span bridge security, and full-scale explosive testing of buildings subject to vehicle borne explosive devices (VBIEDs).


Terrorism assessments provide a quantitative measure of vulnerabilities to terrorist threats.  They include probable maximum loss (PML) / maximum foreseeable loss (MFL) studies, that are conducted to determine the potential property loss, human injury, and business interruption associated with a potential attack.  Recommendations can optimize the effectiveness of existing protective measures and/or suggest potential operational changes and structural retrofits/hardening to reduce risk and vulnerability, in line with a client’s particular risk appetite and capacity.

Criteria Development

Our senior staff members are widely recognized for their expertise in anti-terrorism and force protection engineering. So much so that, both government and industry have relied on PEC to develop criteria (including U.S. Department of Defense, Federal Highways Authority, and GSA blast criteria) for protecting infrastructures, systems and people. Such knowledge and experience, coupled with ongoing practical design activities, gives us a unique perspective on the timeliness and effectiveness of these standards, as well as an awareness of when criteria may require updating or further development.

For more information on PEC’s services related to protection from terrorist attacks, please contact Aldo McKay or Eric Sammarco.


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