Disaster Security Deployment: Considerations for Contractors

Disaster Security Deployment: Considerations for Contractors

Posted in September 2017 during Hurricane Harvey in Houston, TX

“I’m in Houston now for the past 7 days working a security detail for an area retailer. I’m assigned to the 2000 – 0800 shift. I’ve worked similar types of details in my home area but this is my first out of state detail. I’m no expert but I know lots of guys and ladies are looking to do this work so I thoughts I’d share some observations.

Also read: How to solve the “Must have any US State’s security license“ problem.

First the opportunity came up very fast, saw the post Tuesday was on a plane Wednesday. So read the RFS documents carefully, have your documents ready to go; resume, certifications, picture (if required), gear, travel information (TSA Pre Check number), insurance, etc… Don’t be trying to figure this out the day of the post or call.

We’re working 2 person posts and sharing a room. One vehicle shared between the site teams. Once you’re at the hotel you’re on your own if you want to go anywhere.

A couple of notes don’t be as James Price has said the douche bag contractor. Relieve your post on time, bath, don’t keep your partner awake with BS, keep your shit squared away, back them up, etc… In short be a professional.

Bring enough clothes to sustain yourself for the duration of the deployment as laundry service may not be available. We’re wearing 5.11’s and company polos. Bring a hat, I recommend two pair of footwear, and a rain jacket minimum and any other weather appropriate gear. A pair of work gloves is a good idea too.

Cell phone, have cables, wall & vehicle adapters, a charger for remote sites where there is no power. I recommend a small pocket size one and in the future I would bring my Powerall with attachments in my go bag.

Two flashlights one decent tactical light, a smaller penlight type for checking stuff out and a small red lens for in the room at night so you don’t wake up your roommate turning on lights or million lumen tactical light. A pocket note pad and pen.

I have been wearing my IPAK on my belt but have my IFAK and pill pack (if you don’t know what either are FITFO) in my go bag. I also have a CPR mask on me.

Tools, I have a Leatherman, Spyderco Endura, Swiss Army Classic, water bottle, travel mug, and titanium spork.

Also in my go bags is a mini hygiene kit, shamag, sunscreen, bug spray, extra glasses, 4 bottles of water, power bars, change of under clothes, and other sustainment items. Be prepared to take care of yourself.

Also bring some some cash with you. Minimum of $100.00. If you smoke or dip make sure you have yourself covered for at least a week or so. Cash is king as ATM’s May not be working.

That’s about all for now as I just got off shift and am falling asleep. Remember be professional and able to take care of yourself.”


Author  – Art Dorst is the owner of A. Dorst Consulting & Training Services and is a Senior Consultant for LaSorsa & Associates.  He served in the U.S. Navy and  Army National Guard, and is a retired municipal Police Officer, NRA Instructor, and is currently a security provider/trainer.


A further note: Caveat emptor.

With all of the hurricane hoopla happening almost yearly, be mindful of those who have a lack in ethics and principles. This industry will never improve if we do not police our own and hold our ethics higher. Further, working for someone with no ethics is enabling the problem.

Just in this last year in 2018 and on going with this season, these folks broke their contractual obligations, willfully and knowingly. I would advise the strongest form of caution in working with/for people who behave like this.

…Or at least get your money up front! (But you’ll still suffer reputational damage from working with them.)

Jody Lynch
Robert Sabado
Ray Perez
Terrence Davis
Peter Helton

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