Maritime security is crucial for protecting both individuals and merchant vessels due to increasing threats from criminals and smugglers worldwide.
Famous individuals and politically important people need armed security guards to protect themselves and their vessels during a journey.
But, is it possible to hire armed security guard UK? Let’s find out.
Armed Security Guard UK
In the UK, It is illegal for anyone to carry guns for any purpose, including self-protection. They include SIA certified professional bodyguards.
The United Kingdom has strict gun control laws, and it is proud to have one of the world’s most low rates of crimes that are gun-related. Weapons such as handguns, pepper spray, CS gas, and tasers are classified as firearms and banned in the UK by the Firearms Act 1997.
Every police squad has its own firearms unit, used as response teams at gun-related occurrences or crimes. Only 5% of police officers in the United Kingdom, including England, Wales, and Scotland, can carry arms. The rest of the police officers, except officers in Northern Ireland, remain unarmed on duty.
If you search for “private security agency near me” on Google and contact some security companies from there, they will tell you that none of them are authorised to provide armed security UK. Therefore, no Private Security, including Bodyguards, can ensure your protection using firearms in the UK.
Armed Protection Vs Unarmed Protection?
Now, let’s discuss the difference between armed protection and unarmed protection to get a clear view of the situation:
Trained armed bodyguards keep their clients safe, using intelligence before force. They plan and organise their clients’ moves, survey the venues, and meticulously organise their routes to evade dangerous areas.
They must have sound situational awareness, notice suspicious demeanour in their surroundings, respond quickly to danger and guide their client to a securer environment.
An experienced bodyguard is skilled at handling conflict. If there is no other way, a bodyguard responds to an assailant with martial art as they have professional training in unarmed battle.
As they do not have the right to bring a firearm, they must use force as a last resort, as their legal obligation is to protect their clients at any cost. Otherwise, they might have no way to defend themselves or justify their actions in court.
Close protection private operatives are usually ex-army or police, and they bring their skills and experiences to the new roles.
Good private executive protection relies greatly on discretion. We recommend covert protection, also called Protective Surveillance. In these scenarios, bodyguards mix in the client\’s surroundings to stay unrecognised and be on the lookout while keeping alert.
In contrast, the London Met Police squad is responsible for safeguarding the diplomats and royals, offering private armed security UK to Government officers visiting Heads of States and sovereigns. They possess similar skills to the Close Protection secret operatives, including face-to-face combats and emergency planning.
Their training provides them with complementary skills on how to use firearms, handle a gun, shoot and tactics to utilise.
In addition to the standard police training, police officers responsible for Personal Protection acquire 26 weeks of comprehensive training to qualify as an Authorised Firearms Officer (AFO) before joining. They work in plain attire and are part of a large team bearing a hidden firearm. They need to maintain their shooting talents and get re-evaluated every year to keep their firearm permit.
You should use armed protection as a preventive measure and not an offensive action. If a personal armed protection officer shoots someone to save their client, the law will personally hold him liable. Section 3 of the 1967 Criminal Law Act suggests that he will have to defend himself in court that the use of the firearm was necessary to avert the crime.
Close Protection and Firearms Training
Many global armed security companies deliver maritime security guards in the aggressive conditions of Africa and the Middle East. However, very few have globally acknowledged firearms qualifications. That’s why the industry depends on \”Weapons Competency courses\”, also known as Private Maritime Security Certification.
Many argue that vetting, selecting and training Close Protection Security Officers don’t go very far. Most definitely, not far enough to bring firearms if there is a change in UK’s law.
Will UK Review Their Standing on Using firearms?
Neighbouring countries like France are reconsidering their approach to armed security to respond better to terrorist threats and increase security risks. The French Government now authorises bodyguards and private security guards to carry guns under particular circumstances when there is an unprecedented threat level, ensuring that they take the mandatory training for armed protection in France. At the same time, the UK government has restricted firearms for Close Protection to a fixed and specified number of police officers after training them.
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