Got this from a corespondent on Warrior Talk:
Force Science Institute confirms Suarez approach
The newest issue of Force Science News (#239) from Force Science Institute (not available yet on their website, but should be soon) confirms much of the basis for the Suarez approach to interpersonal ballistic mediation. A few highlights:
Sprinting forward is fast and backpedaling is slow:
Stride length. Sprinting straight forward from a starting position, the average subject (let's say a suspect charging toward an officer) covers more than 3 feet in his first stride. His third step stretches out to more than 4 feet, and by his sixth stride he's closing distance at more than 5 feet per stride.
Back-peddling from a starting position (as a startled officer might do in trying to escape an attack), the average first step is barely 2 feet and doesn't reach 3 feet even after 6 strides.
Step time. The average forward sprinter takes a first step in about a third of a second and follows with subsequent steps about every quarter-second. He can propel himself through 6 strides in slightly more than a second and a half, the researchers found.
Stride velocity. By the time he hits his fifth stride, he's sprinting at just over 13 mph. "A back-peddler--if he hasn't already fallen by then--is nowhere close to that speed," Lewinski says. "Civilians can move really quickly in launching an assault, and true to form, a reacting officer is at a marked disadvantage, especially in trying to escape backwards."
The takeoff works (although they didn't test angles):
Backward step. Researchers found that subjects who first took a quick backward step with their dominant leg and pushed off from there when turning to sprint to the side were generally able to generate more power and force, thus increasing their acceleration for short distances. This could have implications, Lewinski says, for officers trying to get out of the way of an approaching threat, such as a speeding vehicle.
Conventional approaches may need to be re-thunk:
• "Our findings show that a suspect standing 9 feet from an officer can charge at him and be close enough to reach out and slash him with an edged weapon in just over half a second. Starting just 5 feet away, a determined offender can be stabbing an officer with his extended arm in a third of a second," Lewinski says. "What does this do to the traditional thinking about a reactionary gap and about a preemptive use of force?"
• "Given the documented slowness of back-peddling, are officers being trained to make--and practice--well-timed and well-coordinated J turns and L moves as escape tactics?"
• "Understanding that suspects may flee and shoot back at the same time, are officers practicing shooting at targets that are moving away from them at some angle as fast as this study shows an average attacker can sprint, perhaps up to 13-15 mph?"
• "Do they understand and practice what they need in terms of time and stride distance to move out of the way of an oncoming vehicle that a suspect is deliberately driving toward them? Given our clearer understanding of the relationship between time, distance to be covered and proximity of an officer to a vehicle it is now more feasible to train officers to accurately evaluate the degree of risk posed by an oncoming vehicle and to help them determine whether getting out of the way is a safe, reasonable option or whether shooting to stop or divert the driver is the only necessary course of action given the circumstances.
• "Are investigators and force reviewers prepared to consider the speed with which offenders can attack from relatively short distances when analyzing an officer's defensive actions?"
• "Likewise, can departmental spokespersons use this information appropriately in public to explain uses of force that might otherwise seem questionable.
Imagine that! Suarez International was doing this way back in 2005. About time the Law Enforcement Community got the word...even eight years later