After a return from a month in Southeast Asia and having a great time instructing at kanchanaburi http://www.fighttimes.com/magazine/magazine.asp?article=1389 it was immediately onto the final arrangements for the specialist close personal protection course.
This course was a small group course and had been planned and promoted as such.
The candidates included an owner of a major security company an emergency services paramedic a security guard and a mining supervisory engineer.
Post registration the course kicked off in earnest with the usual copious amount of required lectures and note taking in protocol etiquette and the specialist training equipment and operational requirements to operate as a close personal protection specialist.
Roles, duties, responsibilities and the establishment of fixed and mobile control rooms were included in the initial lectures along with close personal protection definitions.
The exponents were next introduced to the types of protection and threat level requirements.
There was a lunch presentation on day two by Alistair Hogg, the managing director of Aotea Security on the industry in NZ and internationally in relation to CPP and of the recent changes in policy and licensing in NZ in the security industry.
Alistair is a long term Todd Group member that has worked CPP along with me and other members.
He is the Chairman of the NZ Security Association, past chairman of the NZ chapter of ASIS and is a member of the Australasian Council of Security Professionals.
Alistair also has a Masters of Science degree in security and risk management from Leister University in the United Kingdom and is a certified protection professional with ASIS international.
Al’s down to earth but professional lecture and questions and answers session provided a great opportunity for exponents to learn of industry policy changes and the reasoning behind such changes being made law and how it is proposed the new training requirements will be delivered nationally.
One interesting thing that all in attendance agreed on was the need to ensure any training providers are in-fact qualified in the subjects to be delivered and are competent and confident.
This will require the powers that be insist on proof of training and qualification in the specific training fields if they want the qualified professional to provide such training.
I know in my field of CQB/CQC the unscrupulous use of the titles CQB/CQC in regards to instructor status by those who have never been on a basic course, let alone a military instructor combative qualification course. This is in a small and specialist field where qualified instructors need to have come up through the ranks and could easily be checked by any authority serious about approving only professional qualified instructors. The qualified will be able to provide course reports, references and official certification and instructing log books supporting their claims and use of such titles and in my world checking such credentials is a must.
The Todd Group is very thankful to Al and appreciates his continued support of our specialist training courses.
We always provide instructors that have put in decades training and qualifying with long service records in their specific fields and this really provides everyone with primary information and instruction.
The course was very fortunate to be instructed over two days by a good friend and former Special Forces operator with a post military long term record of service in PSD in Iraq and also in anti-piracy.
The well prepared lessons on the training equipment and weapons requirements for such contracts made for very interesting and informative tuition that the exponents listened to every word of.
They were shocked at the amount of ammunition carried and contact realities of operating in such an environment.
They also very quickly learnt that without the specialist military background working in such an environment was stupidity and professional operators would not want to have such individuals on-board.
They were told of individuals that had slipped through the recruiting cracks only to arrive in country without the required skills and prior service, which meant they could not be part of the team out on jobs and as such meant team members had to also take care of their duties.
They really were provided with a considerable amount of information on requirements, considerations and outlines of the instructor’s experiences.
The lesson detailed the best equipment weapons and clothing for such roles including the required operational skills and the importance of your team being made up of seasoned professionals.
The power point presentation combined with clear facts and expansive explanations left no room for doubt in the exponent’s minds as the requirements and realities.
Instruction in how to undertake security surveys, threat assessments and compile advanced plans and operation orders were also a major part of the first several days on course.
The Todd Systems comprise of a substantial close protection related close combat component and between the course lectures and theory components blocks of time were allocated to this specialist system of close protection related close combat.
CPP Specific CQC
CPP Specific CQC
CPP Specific CQC – Actions On
CPP Specific CQC – Actions On
CPP Improvised Device Employment
Phase Principal E&E Decentralisation and Cover
This is very different to many courses where traditional martial arts or variation of such arts make up the defensive tactics components.
Initially the close protection related close combat component was practised statically and later as part of marking time drills, then under pedestrian escort formations and conditions.
CPP Course In formation
Exponents were gradually introduced to increased threat levels ranging from a nuisance type threat through to edged weapons, firearms and grenade type threats.
Exponents were provided with the knowledge to make rapid assessments and sound tactical decisions based on their prior training under a wide range of actions on threat situations.
Early on in the course of instruction the group were required to learn specialist close protection for rail operations, maritime operations, air operations and vehicular/convoy close personal protection.
Once the lecture components of the previous had been completed the group next had to conduct advanced planning, under taking security surveys and threat assessments, then preparing operational orders for upcoming exercises.
First up was the maritime advon on the Monarch, a local tourist cruise boat that has supported the Todd Group for many years with our close personal protection courses.
The group met with the skipper and conducted their advon not only on the Monarch but also on the dock and land-based facilities, before driving down the peninsula and conducting an Avon on a satellite docking facility where they would later on the exercise phase transport their principle to for boarding the Monarch.
The following day and a second advon, this time at Mainland Air where they had to conduct an advon on the aircraft and ground facilities for the upcoming air close protection exercise. Mainland Air has also been a long-time supporter of the Todd Group and our close personal protection specialist courses of instruction.
The Dunedin airport was the next stop where the exponents were given a guided tour and rundown on capabilities and services in relation to VIPs and close personal protection at the Dunedin airport.
The Dunedin airport has supported Todd Group close protection courses since 1996 and we are very fortunate to have such willing and beneficial information and assistance.
The lectures had now moved on to vehicle selection and driving, including convoy driving, evasive and aggressive driving in relation to phase ambush actions on.
Day five and the Advon on the Dunedin Railway station and the Seasider train were conducted with the full support and cooperation of the manager and her staff.
Once again we have had the full assistance and support from the staff and management of the Taieri Gorge railway on our CPP courses since 1996.
The exponents now not only had to continue with lessons in subjects such as danger areas and offensive actions, incident management, movement formations and the medical aspects of close personal protection but also had to prepare the operation orders for land, air, sea and rail practical exercises.
To add to the long days and nights exponents were housed at Camp Todd some 45 minutes’ drive from the Todd Group HQ situated in the Dunedin CBD.
Gus Hall, a former Todd Group Close Personal Protection course graduate who also is a Phase 3 Todd Systems CQB ranked practitioner and depot instructor in Nelson was the course chef and an assistant instructor along with Chris Marsh another Todd Group Phase 3 CQB practitioner and former Todd Systems CPP graduate with a long history of involvement with pistol, rifle and shotgun shooting.
Pedestrian escort formations and actions on drills were now being practised as part of the physical practical training to break up the lecture components along with vehicle embus and debus training. Day five included a good days shooting with several thousand rounds being spent due to the course being a small group.
Day six began with the practical air exercise which comprised of two principles from different locations being escorted to Camp Todd, then to mainland air where they under pedestrian escort from the Mainland air ground facilities were taken to the aircraft and safely boarded, then taking a flight. The exponent’s operation orders included all advances immediately prior to the principal’s arrival, as well as taking care of all security requirements in relation to vehicles while the principles were travelling by air, sea and rail on the exercise phases and all emergency considerations.
When the aircraft landed, the principal was safely and tactically escorted to the Mainland air land-based facilities, then to the vehicles and away from the Mainland Air facilities.
Day six also included the maritime exercise where the principal was transported to the satellite docking location where the advance element were in place and had secured the boarding facilities.
The principal boarded the vessel once it had been checked and declared safe for the trip back to the Monarch land-based facilities in Dunedin.
On arrival in Dunedin the advance element were ready to escort the principal from the Monarch to the waiting vehicle and back to the Todd Group HQ.
By day seven the course had undergone theory and practical in the recognition of improvised explosive devices and how to conduct searches for such devices, making the area where any such devices were located as safe as possible and then call in the experts. Practical searches of a premises and vehicles were undertaken by the group.
Between Advons in the preparation of operation orders lectures continued in various subjects including helicopter operations and the negotiation of contracts and counter ambush options.
Day seven begun with 4WD theory conducted by former 4WD drive champion Gordon Perkins, after then Gordon instructed the practical 4WD phase in relation to close personal protection operations.
Off Road Evasive Driving
Day 8 included the conducting of an Advon on the Southern Cross Hotel in Dunedin another long-term supporter of the Todd Group CPP courses.
Day 9 the practical evasive and aggressive driving phase was conducted at Beachlands speedway.
Sue Lavender, a life member of Beachlands Speedway along with her street stock driver assistants again provided an excellent service for the Todd Group CPP course.
The Todd Group have had an over 20 year association with Beachlands speedway, both in an event security capacity and by means of their long-term support of the CPP courses dating back to the first time we conducted an international CPP course in 1996.
Exponents were provided with two street stock cars for the ramming phase and a sedan and station wagon for the fast turns and evasive driving phases.
Sitting beside the exponents and instructing them in the driving manoeuvres, you could see looks of excitement on their faces as their driving proficiency increased.
Days ten through 13 were involved with the final training drills that included pedestrian escort practice in the central city and immediate action drills at the Todd Group headquarters.
This combined with the final planning and preparation, including the compiling of operation orders for a real life close protection role.The group were tasked with the close protection of two well-known Dunedin businessmen in Mr Pat and Mr Ken Cummings.
I have personally known Ken and Pat for the past 30 years and have the upmost respect for them as friends and leading local businessmen.
They were more than happy to assist and their support of my courses is very much appreciated. The exercise included the exponents having to prepare the operation orders and drive the clients and their wives in the clients personal vehicles taking them from their separate residences to a restaurant for dinner then to the casino, a private party and then to an inner-city bar before taking them back to their homes.
This exercise required the exponents to be dressed in their class A attire and was a valuable learning curve for both protective details of the fundamentals of real-life close personal protection.
Day 12 included continued training exercises including an exercise protecting multiple principles during the day for lunch at a restaurant followed by a country drive and visits to see a Clydesdale horse and then other wildlife on a nearby farm.
Day 13 included debriefs of all the exercises and the exponents delivering of post exercise presentations. There were continued final lectures and practical training in defensive tactics, close protection related close combat and the use of CPP specific devices and the expandable baton.
The Safe-T-Pen and on your Todd Hook, two Todd Group products were the specific devices instructed for self-protection and close protection.
During the two weeks of the course exponents attended training at the Todd Group in CQC joining in with the Todd Group resident Phase 1 and Phase 3 HQ exponents giving them a good opportunity to learn more combative skills and determine their individual capabilities in relation to CQC and self-protection.
The evening of Day 13 included the course final dinner and certificate presentation attended by the course instructors and their family members as well as Todd Group members including Master Instructor Howard Bell and Todd Group 2IC Kowley ‘Cowboy” Mitchell.
Day 14 and the graduates of the 2012 CPP course left Camp Todd and made a final visit to the central city in Dunedin before being taken to the airport and departing for home.
The group left with considerably more specialist knowledge and experience than when they arrived and learnt some valuable lessons in relation to the realities of working close protection.
Working as a team and having to deal with individual’s traits and shortcomings is all part of the realities of close personal protection and is very much a part of such training when a group of individuals have to live, train and work together under such high levels of expectation and attention to detail requirements.
They will always remember I’m sure the importance of communications, the chain of command and conducting continuous checks of each other and each other’s equipment and vehicles as mechanical breakdown or human error need to be reduced to as low-level as possible.
I can confidently report that the CPP course of 2012 overcame adversity, dealt with human error and mechanical failure as well as clients and outside agencies changes in details and plans and achieved the desired outcomes and training objectives. This specialist basic level course of instruction will prepare them well for future employment in the close protection field.
Of the hundreds of enquiries I receive in relation to attending such courses only the smart and committed front up and undergo such training and we at the Todd Group commend them for their foresight, commitment and resolve.
The reality was during the course and even on the last day we were still receiving enquiries for the course and when you consider the importance of attention to detail, advance planning and preparation requirements in CPP this leaves a lot to be desired.
The Todd Group CPP course covering land, air, sea, rail, road pedestrian and armed components as well as all the required specialist protective skills is the only course that incorporates all the previous in New Zealand and is very reasonably priced compared to similar courses conducted globally.
This course of instruction for the general public is only conducted every 3 to 4 years due to capacity CQC instructing schedules and in between is only available by prior arrangement to individual tuition clients companies or corporations.
Attendees post course recollections.
NB. Emergency medical background.
I came to Dunedin to attend the Todd Group close personal protection course. I did this course because I was interested in expanding my CQB skill set and learning more about close protection.
I was really impressed with the course, the topics covered and the knowledge of instructors. The key message I took away was that planning and preparation are essential and I would highly recommend this course for anyone who wants to learn or refresh the close protection knowledge.
MD security guard.
I am writing this on my own accord to illustrate how good the CPP course is.
Simply put, it’s the best. That’s not lip service but fact, evident on Tanks experience structure of the course, content practical, oral and written.
If you want to attend a CPP course, by being lazy and having your teammates carry you, then this course is not for you. Tank will bollock you and ensure you’re at your best. Tank is fair and impartial and his passion for instructing is obvious. Tanks CPP course is worth every penny enough said.
My name is DS and I work in the security sector. Over the past 10 years I have had moderate exposure to entertainer, world class athletes and VIP’s.
During this time it has always concerned me that while the threat to these Principals was low and they often travelled with their own CPA’s, I felt I had a serious lack of professionally delivered information on the subject.
Unfortunately there are far too many individuals that claim they provide CPP services with no professional training. As the global security requirements increase, the need for professionalism is also increasing.
This course has provided me with three key things;
1. The blending together of parts of information I have learnt over the years from people I have worked with and information I have read
2. Deleted information that is out dated, wrong or ineffective.
3. The provision of effective, field tested skills that you would never learn from a book or from a mate that thinks he knows what he’s doing.
The range of speakers, skills and environments provided over the time of this course kept me engaged in it. We covered land, rail, sea and air components, detailing procedures and best practice to ensure each was completed effectively.
The highlights of the course included use of firearms and blunt weapons, driving skills and development of operation orders.
While there were very long days, the friendships developed provided support and encouragement when team members were struggling.
My name is MP and I am from Australia. I chose to come to New Zealand to take part in the course as it has always been an interest of mine but I was never before in a position to take part. My background to date has been in the Engineering Industry with a supervisory role over the past 10 years. I have found the course to be extremely in depth and covered all areas of Protection work including some that I did not realize were covered by this kind of role.
I have had an amazing time on the course. The facilities provided were great and allowed for a very authentic training environment. I have no doubt that I will take what I have learned here and build on it to become a sought after commodity in the Close Protection Industry.
My thanks go to Tank and his lovely wife, also to Cookie and Firepower for all their hard work and assistance on the course. Also a big thank you to all the people of Dunedin who assisted to make this Course an amazing experience.