One of the major benefits of the training program is the confidence it gives operators to handle some of the nontraditional situations that are out there. Birch says operators no longer need to feel like they are expected to just sit there and take whatever abuse is meted out to them. He says the program has empowered them to take action by de-escalating situations, recognizing early on that a situation is potentially hostile or dangerous and then using techniques they learned to mitigate some of the risks.
“Then, if it does come to where it’s an actual assault, having some sort of technique is really important,” Birch says.
Birch explains that the defense tactic the operators are taught is simple to do.
“I credit Jeff Patterson and the fine work that his organization did in helping us develop it. It’s really hard to develop a self-defense technique that anyone can do. Obviously we have some older drivers here, we have small drivers, we have some very large drivers, so trying to find a technique that could benefit everyone was really important to us. They were able to help us with that. I think that was a huge success, finding the right technique because it is simple to do. It’s really easy, it’s not very flamboyant. It doesn’t look like Bruce Lee karate chopping a bunch of people; it’s nothing like that. It’s very controlled, very conservative and very effective.”