Tools of Terror: Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs)

Providing Responders and Administrators the tools to recognize, mitigate,
respond to and recover from incidents involving the use of IEDs..

This course is available for On-Site Training only. We will bring this course to your agency or company.
Contact Don Dickson, On-Site Training Manager at (301) 455-5633 or

About this course

The ever-present reality and paradigm shift of domestic extremist-rooted terrorism has led to the realization that violence and mass casualty attacks will continue with greater frequency and success unless mitigating measures are taken. In particular, Responders must recognize, mitigate, respond to and recover from terror incidents involving improvised explosive devices (IEDs) as a high probability threat. This terror tool has no conscience and is bound only by the imagination of those who employ them. GTI’s first course on the subject, TOOL OF TERROR: IEDs, will reveal the stark reality of the threat and prepare high level agency/corporate administrators, emergency managers and first responders to meet daily requirements to recognize, mitigate, respond to and recover from IED initiated incidents.

This course is designed as an introduction to IEDs, to include types, anatomy and explosives. The course will also reflect on current and emerging trends of the employment of IEDs in attacks to include: target selection and surveillance, vehicle borne IEDs, person borne IEDs, overt and covert delivery and their use in conjunction with armed assaults and coordinated attacks. The goals of this course will be accomplished through a mixture of direct lecture and exposure to inert training aids. “Take-aways” provided to the students will give them tools to be used as they apply the lessons-learned from this course at their home assignment (government or corporate).

What you will learn

  • To recognize the types of home-grown explosives most prevalent today
  • To identify chemical sources including Chlorate, Fertilizer, Peroxide and more.
  • To describe what a production lab may contain, set-up indicators, etc.
  • To distinguish various attacker modis operandi
  • To recognize and categorize detection tools and equipment
  • To review and analyze actual examples of events, sources and results
  • To develop and employ check lists to determine activities indicating production
  • To evaluate and select appropriate response procedures and tactics

What our students reported after our last training presentation of this course

  • I can't say enough about the course or its presentation. I wish it could be longer, I learned much and could have learned more. Thank you!
  • I'm always learning as I did today. A good day; good job. Thanks.
  • Great mix of background information, history, motivators, and application of political views related to the use of IEDs.
  • Definite eye opener. (Instructor's) Knowledge was incredible along with experience.
  • Interesting course that opened my mind to events that could occur in our area, and gave us knowledge of what to do in case of that threat.
  • Great course. Keeps you interested. Opened my eyes to whats out there.
  • Class was interesting as well as material. Instructor was able to keep entire class motivated and interested throughout the day.
  • Very well worth it !!!
  • Teaching was very good. Hands on training was great! Dog demonstration was great! (Search) Room with booby-traps was excellent!
  • Awesome hands-on!
  • This course gave me a great base to begin to build corporate plans for resopnding to bomb threat incidents. Thank you! Great Course!
  • The hands-on portion was excellent and there should be more of it...that may be the only time some agencies practice it!
  • Very good eye opener course. Would recommend this course!
  • This was a very interesting course. This should be done with all new officers and recruits to better train them to be more observant about dangerous changes in society.
  • Excellent Job !!! Class Act !!!! (ok, I was faithful to the number of exclamation points.)
  • Great awareness course. Fully recommend to All!

Who should attend

  • Law Enforcement Officers, Supervisors and Administrators
  • Public Safety Bomb Technicians and Special Operations Administrators
  • Fire Service Personnel
  • Emergency Medical Practitioners and Administrators
  • Security Executives
  • Emergency Management Professionals
  • Contract Security Professionals
  • Facility Security Officers (FSO)
  • Corporate and Agency Security Personnel and Administrators
  • School Resource Officers (SRO)

Course syllabus

  • Introduction to IEDs
  • Anatomy of IEDs
  • Components
  • Homemade and improvised explosives
  • Packaged IEDs
  • Person borne IEDs
  • Vehicle borne IEDs
  • Radio controlled IEDs
  • Tactics, Techniques and Procedures
  • Target Selection
  • Surveillance
  • Employment
  • Response to IED incidents
  • Case studies
  • Questions and Review

What you will learn through classroom instruction

  • You will learn how to define an improvised explosive device (IED)
  • Identify the main functioning types of IEDs
  • Recognize the three types of IEDs
  • Identify the major components of an IED
  • Identify the basic principles of the person borne IED (PBIED), more commonly referred to as suicide/homicide bombings
  • Identify the varieties and characteristics of vehicle borne IEDs (VBIEDs)
  • Summarize the warning signs of potential VBIEDs
  • Identify the characteristics of radio controlled IEDs (RCIEDs)
  • Describe the common components of RCIEDs
  • Express what actions should and should not be taken when encountering RCIEDs
  • Describe the features of potential targets
  • Describe the varieties of packaged-type IEDs and explain their unique attributes
  • Identify the purpose of multiple devices
  • Understand what happens in an IED response through threat assessment and scene analysis
  • Explain the hazards of, and response to, a secondary device
  • Understand how to react to an IED that has detonated
  • Awareness of attack modus operandi through the use of actual case studies and simulated attack