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Sharpen Your Edge - Perception of Danger

Course Number: PA-618
Course Length: 1 Day (7.5 Hours)

This workshop approaches safety in a unique way – improving the ability of an individual’s perception of dangerous situations by becoming aware of the sensation/perception process used daily by all humans, and utilizing a variety of tactics to improve the sensation, recognition and appropriate response of environmental cues. Participants assess their individual abilities to properly respond to information detected in various situations and use that information to improve both safety and performance.

Topics include sensation versus perception, improving emergency warning device use, improving hearing and sight in various tactical environments, use of smell in criminal and drug patrol, touch sensation and physical searches, and improvement of perception from ambiguous sources of information. Participants will discuss why sirens become ineffective with time and distance, how to improve the location of a hidden person via sound, why most pat-down frisks and body searches miss dangerous objects, how to improve dim light vision, the effect of light brightness on color determination, why we see what we expect to see, why witnesses “fill in” details at an accident scene that they never witnessed, and why witness’ statements often contain erroneous perceptions. This workshop is extremely valuable to all persons who face dangerous situations involving other persons and/or moving objects such as motor vehicles, but especially the first responder.

The officer safety section emphasizes situational awareness, accurate perception, anticipation of physical assault, and the danger of fireworks and other explosives in vehicle stops and bomb threat searching. Hidden weapons and concealment clothing are discussed Through discussion, demonstrations, practical exercises and videos, participants become more aware of the human limitations of sensation and perception and how to maximize the perceptual equipment they do have.

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