Situational Awareness Tips from a LEO

Situational Awareness Tips from a LEO

I can’t think of any other profession that relies on situational awareness day in day out, every day to keep themselves safe than a police officer. From the moment they hit the streets until the moment they take of their uniform Law Enforcement professionals face untold dangers that could leave them injured or dead.

I recently asked a former member of the thin blue line what exactly he did to keep himself safe while on the job. What were the things that he looked for when he approached someone, or they approached him? Here is what I took away from the conversation.


Always watch the hands.

He made it very clear that whenever making contact with anyone the first thing to always look at is not the face, nor the eyes but their hands. See what they are holding, are they carrying a weapon like a gun or a knife or do they have something that could be used as a weapon.

Do they have their hands in their pocket? Or hidden in their clothing? Are they reaching for something?

It doesn’t stop once they have verified that the person doesn’t have anything in their hands. They will continue to glance at the hands every so often to make sure that the person isn’t trying to make an attempt at something.

Hands near the waist can be very dangerous depending on how they are being held. Are the hands relaxed or are they tensed? If you are looking at the back of the hands instead of the thumb, this can be a bad sign.

 Hands that are clenched into fists A reasonably visible sign that a person is thinking of attacking you.





The eyes

After ensuring that the person doesn’t have something that can potentially kill you, the next thing they look at is the eyes. Is the person looking to one side or the other? Is he/she not looking directly at the officer as the officer is asking questions but instead making subtle observations about what is around them?

This can tell the police officer that the person is looking for either a path of escape or potentially something to use as a weapon. More often a way to escape.

Is the person looking up and off to the side when the officer asks a question? This tells the officer that the person is thinking of how to respond to the problem. Sometimes it doesn’t mean anything, but at other times it says that the person is trying to figure out some kind of lie.

Ultimately, it is up to the officer to try to decipher whether they are trying to remember something or if they are trying to concoct some story.

Too much eye contact is a sign of aggression. If they are staring at you for too long without blinking or looking away, it is meant to intimidate.

Does the person look down at their shoes? Are they looking at some point on the ground? Are their eyes trying to look at someone else?

The feet

A quick glance at the feet tells the officer if the person is in a fight or if they are in flight mode. A person standing square to him means that he is either wholly comfortable or that he is thinking of running.

It depends on how the rest of the body language and conversation is going.

 The feet have potentially told him that he will lean to the left or to the right and that the officer needs to stay focused on which direction the person is leaning.

Another give away that the person is about to attempt to flee, is if they tie their shoes. This almost definitely means that that person is about to attempt an escape.

If the person has their feet in a fighting stance, they know that they need to be wary of that impending attack. The way a person is standing will tell an officer all he needs to know to try to stay ahead of the curve.

The other part of body language is personal space. People that attempt to break the boundary of your own area can be a threat. Someone who you don’t know that comes in to close uninvited is a clear sign of danger.

Usually, this is done under false friendliness. A person who is smiling at you and approaches to quickly can be a sign of aggression.

Personally, I have learned never to trust someone who is smiling out on the street. In a workplace or perhaps a crowded event it may be different, but on the street, it can mean something more sinister than a little friendliness.


A person may be trying to avoid you as well.  Does the person try to keep their distance from you beyond the range of a normal conversation? Then the person under questioning is trying to keep that distance in the event that they have to run. Are they facing away from you while talking or orient their bodies in a sideways stance? They may run from you.



"Why you searching me?"


Clothing can mean a lot of things. A person uses clothing to identify themselves. In most cases, it is an expression of who a person is and what they are about. Women seem to know this instinctively.

A person all black outfit with a hoodie is someone to watch, they don’t want to be seen. They don’t want someone observing what they are doing.

Someone with a Marijuana leaf displayed on their clothing obviously enjoys marijuana. They shouldn’t be surprised if they are stopped and searched.

Someone who is in the city with camouflage is a hunter or is at least from the countryside. You know that they are usually just visiting.

Paying attention to clothing will tell you a lot about a person as well although for the purpose of trying to decide if they are a danger you will have to use your own judgment.


Hopefully, this will aid you in at least being more aware of the people around you.

As you practice the technique, it will become more comfortable until it is second nature. As you practice looking first at a person’s hands and then making the visual movement around them, you will find that you indeed do watch people more. This is a good thing.

Who can you trust?

Who can you trust?

As a Prepper who do you trust?

I was looking into joining a prepper group because of a class that I wanted to take. It was a fairly well-known group but I decided to take a look at who was running it.

The man who runs the group also just happened to own a survival supply store.

The only problem is that there were only a handful of reviews for his store and all of them were terrible. Being overcharged on products they purchased because of a computer glitch in checkout.

To make it worse, the classes that I wanted to take had reviews that basically said that money was taken and classes had been canceled. These people made the accusations that all of their phone calls for refunds had never been returned. 

It made me think. Who can preppers trust?



It seems like everyone wants a piece of this market. Most sites I have gone to mainly publish articles like, “10 best survival knives.” Or “15 things you need in your bug out bag.”

Seems a little too much like infomercials to me.

Perhaps you think that the people that make the food that you will eat to survive during the apocalypse would be a good source to trust.

However, if you would think that Wise Food Storage the company that supplies a lot of preppers long term food items would be someone to trust, think again.

Not only are they the Defendant in a class action lawsuit, which I found out about first from Atlas Survival Shelters. But they are also trying to dump their product quickly.

To make matters worse close to a million (correction: 99,000+) people have had their information handed over to the Government. That is a pretty big deal for some preppers.

Are they repentant? It doesn’t sound like they are.

“Wise expects discovery will show that Plaintiffs have not actually consumed any of the products they purchased and, therefore, have suffered no injury in fact whatsoever, but instead merely exchanged one form of property (money) for another (food).”

In fact, as I looked around the internet, there seemed to be massive surge in deals with Wise food products ( not the potato chip company who also seem to be having some trouble at the moment).

On their own website there appears to be a 50% off sale.

Could it perhaps be that this is because they are allowed to sell off their inventory as part of the proceedings? I don’t know,  I’m not an attorney. What I do know is that it is alleged, that the amount of calories provided by a daily serving is less than the amount of calories that a person at Aushwitz recieved on a daily basis.


 Not only health but minds as well is affected.The democratization of the publishing industry by Amazon has allowed a proliferation of terrible books on “How to Survive an Apocalypse.”

It is quite easy for someone to publish a book to Amazon or on their website for 5 to 10 dollars and offer up a basically useless book to people.

I have purchased a few books that had somehow gained great reviews but were essentially thrown into the trash after reading them.

I will be reviewing books, among other things and tell you what I personally think the value of these books really is. Until then, buyer beware.

At the end of the day, it is up to the individual to make their own decisions. But listen to what is being said and do your own research on it as well. 

Especially when it comes to matters that could affect your life and that of your families.

There are some really good people out there but there are also those that would like nothing more than to take advantage of you.

The funny part is that a week or two later, Ron said on his youtube channel, that he had recieved a phone call from Wise Foods. That they had explained that the portions were only a few hundred calories.

Did they threaten him with a lawsuit? Or did they make him an offer he couldn’t refuse as a business man? He seemed to be a little unsettled as he offered his viewers a 5% off deal if they used his link to go buy the food items.


One of our interviewers attempted to contact Ron to not only discuss this but to run an article on his bunker business. After initially stating that he was willing to do the interview our phone call was met by a voice mail box that wasn’t set up and an unanswered text.

Another youtuber discussed how the portions were not meant to feed anyone for a long period of time, citing that it was written on the packaging exactly how many calories were in each package of food. He postulated that every company has this stated on the food containers and it was therefore an acceptable practice.


At the same time, is it really so cut and dry? I have dehydrated emergency food and on the container it specifies how long a person can expect to be able to survive while using this product. It gives the caloric value both on the main “Bucket” as well as on the individual containers.

The difference is that I purchased mine through a well known outdoor supply store, one that is geared towards serious mountaineering and outdoor style adventures. I know that when I make this dehydrated food, it doesn’t look like ruined oatmeal and is filling and energizing.


One of the major competitors ran a study to determine how much air was present within the containers. It found that the level was mid level compared to it’s own product as well as other manufacturers.

Now, I don’t expect that a company will advertise it’s own short-comings, what I do expect is for a company to work on improving it’s product. Especially when that product has life and death consequences.

People don’t buy long term food storage because they think it tastes great. They buy it because they expect it to be there when they need it and that it will actually nourish them.

As far as “survivalist” or “prepper” youtube channels are concerned, I have since stopped watching them as a source of any real information. If I need to read the fine print of every product that is being recommended, then what is the point of listening?

I can do the research myself and probably find better products, one that isn’t made in Mexico or China. One that is set to a higher standard and is used by serious enthusiasts.