Security awareness

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Scipio Cowan
  • 55th Security Forces Squadron commander
Have you ever heard the phrase: "Call the cops! It's their job!" In reality, installation security is the job of everyone working in and around an Air Force base and its resources. Although my fellow cops are the most conspicuous people on the base, we can't be everywhere and that's where you come in! We need you to be the eyes and ears of Offutt. 

There have been several questions concerning restricted area entry procedures recently -- escorted entry, unescorted entry and vehicle entry. I want to dispel any questions you may have concerning these issues. 

Escorting people onto the flight line is only authorized at two entry control points. These ECPs are manned 24 hours a day, seven days a week, meaning there will always be a security forces member posted at there. They are located on the south side of Bldg. 457, the Bennie L. Davis maintenance hangar, and the end of Looking Glass Avenue adjacent to Bldg 458, the Command Post. At these locations, the entry controller will physically check the restricted area badge of the escort official and compare it against one of the following: credential checks using another form of identification, personal recognition and comparing the entry credentials with an entry authority list or telephone or radio verification with the Base Defense Operations Center. 

Before entering into the flight line area, the escort official must give the escort briefing. The entry controller will separate the escort official and the person being escorted when verifying the entry requirements. This gives the escort official the opportunity to indicate a possible duress situation and fill out the forms provided by the entry controller. The escort official is responsible for the search of all escorted, rental or contractor vehicles and any hand-carried items the visitor wants to take into the restricted area. The escort official must also advise the entry controller that the vehicles and hand-carried items were searched prior to being granted entry. 

When it comes to unescorted entry, all four ECPs can be used. The ECPs are the two I mentioned earlier, as well as the south side of Bldg. 565, the E-4 hangar, and the gate adjacent to fuels. In the event you need to enter through the ECPs located on the south side of Bldg. 457 and the end of Looking Glass Avenue adjacent to Bldg. 458, the entry controller will verify the identity of all individuals by comparing their Offutt AFB restricted area badge to one of the four supporting techniques noted earlier prior to allowing entry onto the flight line. 

The procedures for unescorted entry to an unmanned ECP are to swipe the restricted area badge and enter the pin number, which will unlock the turnstile to allow entry. When entering through an unmanned ECP, don't allow anyone to use your badge! It's also illegal for you to swipe your badge and allow other individuals to enter without swiping. This is called "piggybacking" and requires a response from security forces. 

In the event you need to operate a vehicle inside the restricted area, you can only enter through a manned ECP. You need to notify the entry controller if your vehicle and all hand-carried items have been searched prior to entering the ECP. 

Together we can send a message to terrorists -- foreign and domestic -- that we are watching!