Police simulate a terror attack during training to prepare for the 2018 Asian Games, which will take place in Jakarta and Palembang, South Sumatra, in August. (Antara Photo/Nova Wahyudi)

Tips on How to Survive a Life-Threatening Situation


JUNE 14, 2018

Jakarta. We may sometimes face situations when our lives could be at risk, but with the correct guidance things do not can end up for the worst.

Over the past few years, Jakarta has witnessed several incidents, including terror attacks, fires and construction failures, that resulted in injury and death.

A series of terror attacks that occurred in East Java and Riau in May this year provides ample reason why we must learn to properly respond to dangerous situations.

"People often wrongly put themselves in danger, instead of trying to get away from it," said David "Krav," vice president of public safety and risk management at Buddyguard.

Hazards can include terror attacks, brawls and armed robbery.

"The three things you need to do when facing these situations are run, hide or fight," David told the Jakarta Globe at Buddyguard's offices in South Jakarta last week.

"When there's a bombing or a perpetrator carrying a gun, the first thing you have to do is run. Run away from the danger; do not approach it," the self-defense expert added.

The public was amused by a satay seller who calmly continued doing business just 100 meters from the scene of the terror attack in Jalan Thamrin, Central Jakarta, in January 2016. The story quickly went viral, as many people saw his behavior as an act of defiance against terror.

However, David said it is a poor example of how to behave during such an incident.

"Just run away; do not approach the scene [of the attack]. If running away is not possible, then you must hide," he said.

He said it is best to hide in a dark place where it may be difficult for an attacker to find you.

"You should put your cellphone on silent and turn the lights off. This prevents the perpetrators from detecting your presence," David said.

"The last option, when the previous two are not possible, is to fight," he said.

"This does not mean fighting like a martial arts practitioner, but a fight in which you use every item available. You can use anything, including a knife or even a piece of wood, because it is an act of self-defense.

"When you are in this phase, I encourage you not to negotiate. No negotiations."

David is also a certified counterterrorism practitioner and head instructor at Kapap Indonesia.

Surviving an Explosion

When asked how to deal with a bomb attack, especially when you are in close proximity, David proposes a different solution.

He said when a bomb or a grenade is about to explode nearby and you have no chance to run, there is still something you can do to at least try to save your life.

"You must jump immediately so that your body slants away from the bomb. Your legs must directly face the bomb, with your head pointing in the opposite direction. Keep your legs together, close your ears with your hands and keep your arms tightly against your sides. Keep your chest on the ground and your mouth wide open," David said.

He said you may end up losing your legs, but the most important parts of your body could be saved, which may keep you alive.

"You must close your armpits because all of your important nerves are located there, David added.