Vehicle Ramming Attack Mitigation

The use of a vehicle as a weapon in a terrorist attack is not new. Recent terrorist incidents and violent extremist propaganda demonstrate that the use of vehicles as a weapon continues to be of interest by those wishing to cause harm. Attacks of this nature require minimal capability, but can have a devastating impact in crowded places with low levels of visible security.

Vehicle Ramming Self-Assessment Tool

Informational Materials  Vehicle Ramming Self-Assessment Tool

CISA’s Vehicle Ramming Self-Assessment Tool was developed in partnership with the Chicago Police Department to assist the law enforcement community and critical infrastructure stakeholders to evaluate singular or multiple areas of interest, prioritize them by vulnerability to attack, and identify mitigation options for consideration. The tool allows each stakeholder to develop a risk mitigation strategy based on their identified vulnerabilities and options for consideration. Following the completion of the self-assessment, a stakeholder can export a customized report in a variety of configurations to make it available for organizational use. The tool features a section on Information and Resources where users have access to information on barriers, crowd management, considerations for high-speed avenues of approach, and many more security topics with corresponding references.

Guide  Vehicle Ramming Self-Assessment Tool User Guide

 The User Guide provides instructions for the tool and its many functions as well as the different report features. 

Guide  Vehicle Ramming Self-Assessment Tool Overview

 The Tool Overview is a one-page document for stakeholders to learn about the tool and how it can enhance their security planning.

Self-Assessment Tool Resources

Informational Materials  American Society of Testing and Measures, Standard Test Method for Crash Testing of Vehicle Security Barriers 

This Standard Test Method for Crash Testing of Vehicle Security Barriers provides a range of vehicle impact conditions, designations, and penetration performance levels. This will allow an agency to select passive perimeter barriers and active entry point barriers appropriate for use at facilities with a defined moving vehicle threat.


Guide  Chicago Department of Transportation - Rules and Regulations for Construction in the Public Way

 Effective management of this public space is vital for sustainable transportation and infrastructure, as well as for residents and local businesses.


Guide  CISA - Active Vehicle Barrier Selection Tool 

 Market research in this spread sheet allows potential consumers to evaluate the plethora of commercially available barriers in a searchable format. Note: The products offered are to be used for informational purposes only to assist with Active Vehicle Barrier specification and selection processes. Department of State and Technical Support Working Group (TSWG) have not established any new standards through these documents. Existing standards included are cited as such. Department of State and TSWG do not endorse any model or manufacturer included in these products.


Guide CISA - Dam Sector - Active and Passive Vehicle Barriers Guide

 The Dams Sector Active and Passive Vehicle Barriers Guide assists dam owners and operators in understanding various types of active and passive vehicle barriers and how to incorporate them into their overall security plan. The guide also provides a cursory level of technical information regarding barriers and includes references to assist owners and operators in properly designing protective schemes and selecting vehicle barriers and their appurtenant safety and security systems. 


Guide  CISA - Guide to Active Vehicle Barrier (AVB) Specification and Selection Resources

 This resource guide is intended to provide information to help engineers, policy makers, security managers, intelligence analysts, and other security professionals successfully determine Active Vehicle Barrier (AVB) specifications and select appropriate AVB models for a particular site requiring restricted access. The document presents an overview of AVB specification- and selection-related processes.


Guide  CISA - Vehicle Ramming: Security Awareness for Soft Targets and Crowded Places

 The use of a vehicle as a weapon in a terrorist attack is not new. Recent terrorist incidents and violent extremist propaganda demonstrate that the use of vehicles as a weapon continues to be of interest by those wishing to cause harm. Attacks of this nature require minimal capability, but can have a devastating impact in crowded places with low levels of visible security. This fact sheet provides potential indicators to report, actions to take in case of a vehicle ramming attack, and mitigation strategies and protective measures.


Guide  G4S - Vehicular Terrorism: The Threat Behind the Wheel

 Recent vehicular attacks in France and Germany clearly highlighted the viability of vehicle ramming as a legitimate terrorist tactic and one that should be a focus for law enforcement, especially during special event planning. These attacks vividly demonstrate how challenging it can be to stop a vehicular attack once it has been launched.


Guide  Health and Safety Executive, Managing Crowds Safely: A Guide for Organizers at Events and Venues

 This booklet aims to provide practical guidelines on managing crowd safety in a systematic way by setting out an approach which can be utilized by organizers  of any event or venue. The venue may be used regularly, (eg shopping centers and sports grounds, or occasionally (eg fireworks displays and agricultural shows). The guide is aimed at organizers, but will also be of interest to venue staff and contractors.


Guide  National Capital Planning Commission, Designing and Testing of Perimeter Security Elements

 While protecting important public and private buildings is a legitimate need in the United States, that need has too often been dealt with by the placement of unsightly barriers that detract from the public space and create a fortified atmosphere. A major challenge that planners and designers in Washington face today is to develop effective perimeter security measures that respect existing dramatic views, gracious open spaces, and the city’s historic urban design. he plan proposes an expanded palette of attractive furnishings and landscape solutions to guard against the threat posed by bomb-laden vehicles while preserving the open space qualities of the capital’s urban design. Built on an urban design framework that identifies key areas and streets within Washington.


Guide  New York City Pedestrian Level of Service Study, Phase I 

 The objectives of this study are to evaluate the Highway Capacity Manual (HCM) pedestrian Level of Service (LOS) methodology in terms of its suitability for pedestrian planning in New York City, to compile a pedestrian characteristics database, and to make recommendations for changes in pedestrian LOS analysis in New York City.


Guide New York Department of Transportation, Highway Design Manual Chapter 10: Roadside Design, Guide Rail, and Appurtenances

 This chapter also provides guidance for assessing existing facilities to determine the number of safety concerns and nonconforming features that are present in the roadside area and the amount of upgrading that would be appropriate when work is performed on that existing facility.


Informational Materials  Reference Manual to Mitigate Potential Terrorist Attacks Against Buildings

The objective of this manual is to reduce physical damage to structural and non-structural components of buildings and related infrastructure, and also to reduce resultant casualties during conventional bomb attacks, as well as attacks using chemical, geological, and radiological agents. This manual provides design guidance to the building science community of architects and engineers, to reduce physical damage caused by terrorist assaults to buildings, related infrastructure, and people.


Guide  Site and Urban Design for Security: Guidance against Potential Terrorist Attacks

 This publication focuses on site design aimed to protect buildings from attackers using vehicles carrying explosives. These represent the most serious form of attack. Large trucks enable terrorists to carry very large amounts of explosives that are capable of causing casualties and destruction over a range of many hundreds of yards. Perimeter barriers and protective design within the site can greatly reduce the possibility of vehicle penetration. Introduction of smaller explosive devices, carried in suitcases or backpacks, must be prevented by pedestrian screening methods.


Informational Materials  U.S. Department of Transportation_Federal Highway Administration_Traffic Calming ePrimer – Module 3

The Traffic Calming ePrimer is a free, online resource openly available for public use. The ePrimer presents a thorough review of current traffic calming practice and contains the information needed to understand this complex field. The ePrimer is presented in eight distinct modules developed to allow the reader to move between each to find the desired information, without a cover-to-cover reading.

First Responder ToolBox

First Responder Toolbox is an ad hoc, Unclassified//For Official Use Only, reference aid intended to promote counterterrorism coordination among federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government authorities and partnerships with private sector officials in deterring, preventing, disrupting, and responding to terrorist attacks.


Informational Materials  Best Practices for Screening Against Terrorist Attacks (Interactive)

Terrorists will probably use a variety of tactics to attach and hide items, such as GPS trackers, Wi-Fi positioning system (WPS) locators, and IEDs to target, track or attack vehicles. The placement location of such devices will vary depending upon a variety of factors, such as the device's purpose, size, construction, and installation time.


Guide  Best Practices for Vehicle Screening Against Terrorist Tactics (Print) – Survey

 Malicious actors may affix a device in an area that can be quickly and easily reached, such as the lower engine compartment, steering system, drivetrain, wiring-harness points, exhaust system, wheel wells, and other spaces. Personnel should be observant of their vehicles and surroundings, as well as diligent in the performance of vehicle screening upon entry and exit, to identify and prevent terrorists from attempting to target and track their vehicles.


Guide  Vehicle Borne Attacks – Tactics and Mitigation – Survey

 This product encourages discussion and creativity among intergovernmental and private sector stakeholders for integrating protective security measures into public and private places to reduce vehicle-borne threats.


Guide  Vehicle Rental/Leasing Industry Partnerships: A Force Multiplier

With thousands of vehicle rental companies across the US, a security-conscious employee can act as a public safety force multiplier. Their familiarity with rental processes and vehicles and their routine interaction with the general public enables them to identify suspicious activities and behaviors potentially related to terrorism prior to an attack, and to provide authorities information that may aid post-attack investigations.

General Resources

Informational Materials  Active Assailant Security Resources

Active shooter incidents are often unpredictable and evolve quickly. In the midst of the chaos, anyone can play an integral role in mitigating the impacts of an active shooter incident. CISA aims to enhance preparedness through a "whole community" approach by providing  products, tools, and resources to help you prepare for and respond to an active shooter incident.


Video  FBI Vehicle Rental Vehicle Ramming Video

The FBI, DHS, and TSA—in coordination with the Truck Renting and Leasing Association and the American Car Rental Association—have released a short training video to help vehicle rental employees identify suspicious activities and behavior by customers who may wish to use a rented vehicle for nefarious purposes.


Informational Materials  National Counterterrorism Center

The national counterterrorism (CT) leads and integrates efforts by fusing foreign and domestic CT information, providing terrorism analysis, sharing information with partners across the CT enterprise, and driving whole-of-government action to secure national CT objectives.


Guide Protecting Patrons in Outdoor Eating Venues

 This fact sheet identifies security measures for restaurants conducting business outside. COVID-19 guidelines led restaurants to set up tables outside, creating  potential vulnerabilities. It identifies threats such as vehicle ramming and includes security measures to help mitigate threats.


The video provides information to assist with mitigating the evolving threat corresponding to vehicle ramming incidents with insightful technical analysis from public and private sector subject matter experts. It leverages real-world events, and provides recommendations aimed at protecting organizations as well as individuals against a potential vehicle ramming incident.


To contact the Vehicle Ramming Attack Mitigation team or to get more information on Vehicle Ramming Attack Mitigation, please send an email to

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