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Why carry a whistle?

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  • Why carry a whistle?

    Unarmed security has its own unique challenges. Our options are limited when we encounter a trespasser or intruder while on patrol. Many of us prefer Mag-lites because they can be used as a last resort defense if we are unable to retreat/escape.

    Carrying a whistle is another way to protect yourself. You can use it at a distance to shoo trespassers away. This keeps you out of the "danger zone." Whistles are also useful for scaring potential intruders away. The last thing they want is a lot of noise to attract attention to what they are doing. Finally, a whistle may save your life when you are trapped in an area where people are unable to hear your cries for help. I'm sure that you can think of other good reasons to carry a whistle as well. Some people will tease you for having one, but it's well worth it.
    Security: Freedom from fear; danger; safe; a feeling of well-being. (Webster's)

  • #2
    I always carried a whistle on me, even when I was also carrying OC, ASP, and a revolver. I even had the little whistle chain (Not the hook, whistle went into my pocket...)

    Whistles are useful for direction of traffic on private, or if authorized by a LEO or statute, public property. People just do not seem to understand basic traffic hand signals - the State of Florida requires all unarmed security officers learn traffic control methods as part of the initial security examination - but they do understand "I am blowing a whistle at you."

    They're attention getters. So long as you realize that its just noise, and blowing one at someone while running at them has not worked in forty years... Go out and buy a Fox Forty whistle. They're under 5 bucks now.
    Some Kind of Commando Leader

    "Every time I see another crazy Florida post, I'm glad I don't work there." ~ Minneapolis Security on Florida Security Law

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    • #3
      Carrying a whistle makes good sense. Get one that can stand all types of weather and the type that has a tooth retention ridge build in. As Mr Security pointed out, they can ease in finding you if they have not heard your crys for help. I think this is correct: Three short blasts, three long blasts and conclude with three short blasts, or SOS. If I'm wrong, somebody help me out!
      If you ever have to direct traffic, as I have done, wear reflective clothing to include gloves, and as N.A. implied, expect people to suddenly become very stupid and/or ignorant of you signals. Use arm and hand signals accepted in your jurisdiction and don't get sloppy like you might have seen many LEOs do. You are not there to dry your nails or stir coffee.
      What protocol does your local jurisdiction require for whistle directions? We were taught one long blast in conjunction with proper hand and arm signal to stop traffic in one direction and two short blasts and proper hand and arm signals to start traffic cross traffic or provide for left turn traffic.
      Don't be afraid to point your gloved hand at a driver and get them moving.
      Enjoy the day,
      Bill

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Bill Warnock
        .... As Mr Security pointed out, they can ease in finding you if they have not heard your crys for help. I think this is correct: Three short blasts, three long blasts and conclude with three short blasts, or SOS. If I'm wrong, somebody help me out!....
        You are correct. SOS = ...- - - ...
        Security: Freedom from fear; danger; safe; a feeling of well-being. (Webster's)

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        • #5
          I got used to carrying a whistle when working as a Correcions Officer. At the prison where I worked we used whistle blows for all kinds of things and the inmates ever taught how to respond to hearing certain whistle blasts.
          Whistles are good, all purpose, tools that can have many uses in the Security field.
          Hospital Security Officer

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          • #6
            A whistle where i work, would be kinda worthless. concrete walls all around 8 inch steel doors......most would do is pop his and my eardrum... but either then that for others that is not bad of a idea.

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            • #7
              If something bad happens do you have a means, overt or covert, to notify your supervision you are under duress?
              Enjoy the day,
              Bill

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              • #8
                I don't. I have a radio and a cellphone. But thean every post is different. I work in industry. The radio I'm issued is the same one used by the rest of the employees at the facility and is provided by the client. Security, Medical and Water Treatment share channel 1. Other departments are on other channels. If I get into a problem I can use the radio to contact the unarmed SO at the main gate guard shack who can respond or call 911 for me or both if I'm getting my butt kicked. Rest assure that I'll call for anyone else I can get on the radio to come to my aid. Nothing like a dozen steel workers and truck drivers showing up to back you up to make you feel a bit safer. It wouldn't be the first time some dock worker called me on the radio and said "Hey Q-Beam, you need some help over there?". Yeah, pal, don't mess with Q-beam or you may end up messing with the whole plant.
                Peace,
                Q-Beam out.
                Hospital Security Officer

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