Regional Disaster Preparedness


Title: Make the Call IED Version

A group of people move towards a stadium entrance. The Make the Call logo appears on the screen. The subtitle is "Improvised Explosive Devices."

A car drives up along a curb that is marked "No Parking - Fire Lane". The car is missing its front license plate, and the registration sticker in the windshield has been scratched so it is unreadable.

Narrator: Improvised explosive devices have been used in almost every terrorist attack that has taken place in the last forty years.

The driver gets out of the car. Smoke comes from under the car. Something inside starts flashing. As a security guard looks at the car, something explodes. Dust fills the air.

Narrator: The threat is real. We are vulnerable ...

The screen fades to black.

We see scenes of the Main Street light rail. It is a sunny day. Children play in a fountain. People walk in a park.

Narrator: ... but awareness, preparedness, and planning can make a real difference in making our public spaces safe and secure.

We switch to a scene of an outdoor cafe. A man sets a backpack down in the chair, then sits down next to it.

Narrator: We all know bombs don't look like bombs. They come in all shapes and sizes, from a five-pound bomb left in a bag to a five-thousand-pound bomb left in a truck.

The man manipulates something in the backpack, then gets up and walks off, leaving the bag behind.

Narrator: They are often small and easily transportable, with catastrophic effects.

The camera zooms in on the bag as the music crescendos.

We then switch scenes to a hotel room. A maid walks in to clean. She walks past a cardboard box with a large bottle in it. She then stops when she sees a set of architectural plans on the bed and two car remote controls on top of them.

Narrator: Most bomb-making materials are completely benign on their own, but in large quantities, altered or paired, they can be deadly.

The maid continues to look around the room. More chemical equipment is next to the bathroom sink. On the desk, a short length of capped pipe with a wire coming out of it sits next to a tray of chemicals. The maid has an alarmed look on her face. She then walks towards the phone.

Maid: Hello, security? I think you need to come up to Room 410 right away!

We switch scenes to a store. The sign says "Lone Star Feed-Fertilizer." A front-end loader drives past.

Narrator: Bombs often include everyday household items that you can buy at places like pool supply or beauty supply stores, gas stations, and home and garden centers.

A garden store employee talks with customers.

Employee: Hello, how are you guys doing?

Narrator: Obviously, it is imperative that employees are aware of the explosive nature of the goods they sell. But it's even more critical that they know who to talk to if they feel that something is suspicious.

A man loads bags onto a dolly. The employee sees the man with a large number of bags on the dolly.

Employee: Huh. You guys look through this and I'll be right back.

The man with the dolly starts walking towards the exit. The employee walks past him to the back.

Employee (to another employee): Hey Phil! I know what you said about fertilizers, and there was this guy who literally bought everything, and let me tell you, he was no farmer, so I just thought you should know.

Phil: Thanks. Thanks, man. Thanks a lot.

Phil walks off with a concerned look on his face.

We switch scenes to a bus station. A security guard walks past a bus. A woman slides a camera out of a bag, takes a photo of a security guard, and quickly hides the camera again. She looks around to see if anyone noticed. She then starts taking notes, again trying not to be noticed.

Narrator: Reporting suspicious behavior is the number one thing we can do to stop a terrorist attack.

A woman on a bench notices the woman with the camera. She gets up to find help.

Narrator: And you play a key role in keeping us safe and protecting the American way of life. Don't ignore your instincts or rely on others to take action.

The woman from the bench gets the attention of a Metro Police officer.

Narrator: Be prepared, be aware, be safe. If you see something, say something.

The woman with the camera notices the police officer and turns to leave. The officer follows her.

We switch to a close up of someone wearing an olive drab jacket. A thumb trigger pokes out of the sleeve.

Narrator: If you see someone who looks suspicious, or if you find yourself in a potentially dangerous situation, don't try and be a hero. Get as far away from the threat as possible. Try to place a solid physical object between you and the threat.

A young woman notices the man in the coat as he walks towards a building. She looks concerned. A man in a polo shirt holds others back as the man walks into the building.

Narrator: Try and keep others out of the general area and call 9-1-1.

The young woman is on the phone.

Woman: There was this really sketchy guy who just walked in to the student center building. He looked like he was wearing something under his jacket. I don't know, it just really freaked me out.

A group of people move towards a stadium entrance.

Narrator: Terrorists and criminals who wish to cause massive damage may also use trucks, vans, or cars to conduct surveillance or detonate and explosion.

We see the car from the start of the film pull up again.

Narrator: But we know that aware citizens, staff, and employees are the first line of defense in preventing these type of attacks.

The man from the vehicle parks the car and walks off. As he leaves, he bumps into a young man talking with his friend. The young man looks around. The man seems miffed, but his friend notices the car. The two men start walking towards security.

Narrator: Report vehicles that are left for long periods of time, parked in prohibited areas near entrances or exits, ...

Young men, to security guard: ... left his car in the no parking zone ...

Narrator: ... missing identification, or that are left intentionally.

The security guard walks up to the truck. Two propane cylinders are seen in the back seat.

Narrator: Some indicators alone are not necessarily suspicious. But if multiple indicators are present, like electronic components, unusual containers, or if unknown liquids or smoke are coming from a package or vehicle, extreme caution should be exercised.

The camera zooms in on the contents of the car's back seat. A pipe bomb is attached to the propane cylinders. The security guard starts telling people to move to a safe area.

Narrator: If you see a suspicious package or vehicle that might contain an IED, do not touch it or attempt to move it.

Security guard, shouting: I need everybody to clear the area immediately!

Narrator: Report it, and clear the area. Without causing panic, calmly alert others that you have found a suspicious item.

The first security guard reports on the situation to a second security guard.

Second security guard: Clear the area!

Narrator: Move all patrons and personnel at least five hundred feet away from a suspected IED.

As the patrons move to safety, the music crescendos. The first security guard moves away and begins talking on a two-way radio.

First security guard: ... we have a potential car bomb.

Narrator: Step away from the potential threat when using two-way radios or cell phones, as they can trigger explosions. Communicate clearly with your security team, management, and local authorities. Try to confirm the device by attempting to locate the owner of the package or vehicle. Often, suspected threats are misunderstandings, but it's always better to be safe than sorry.

The first security guard bends down to look under something.

Narrator: Always check the area and facility for secondary devices. If you find anything, remember: do not touch it! Report it!

Smoke starts coming from the car. We then cut to local police and fire department responders parked near the scene. A bomb squad robot moves towards the car.

Narrator: The local bomb squad, police, and emergency responders are here to help.

A member of the bomb squad in a protective suit approaches the car.

Narrator: They will arrive with all the necessary tools, equipment, and personnel to secure the facility. The specialists will handle the IED ...

Something in the car starts to spark. We then cut back to the first security guard on the two-way radio.

Narrator: ... but the first line of defense is you. Establish and rehearse plans, procedures, evacuation protocols, as well as potential locations that could be used as staging or assembly sites for both evacuation and first responders.

It is now night time. The police are still present, and a group of people are standing next to the officers.

Narrator: Preparing and planning for the worst will help us be more safe and secure for the future. Be prepared, be aware, be safe. If you see something, say something. Make the call.

The screen fades to black.

Caption: If you see or suspect an IED:

Caption: For more information visit:

Credits: Special Thanks To:

Credits: Very Special Thanks To: The Houston Police Department Bomb Squad.

Credits: If You See Something, Say Something (TM) used with permission of the Metropolitan Transit Authority (NY).

Credits: Make the Call is a Department of Homeland Security grant funded project. Produced by the City of Houston Mayor's Office of Public Safety and Homeland Security.

Credits: Make the Call Logo. Copyright 2010.

End of film.