The Field Guide to Transport Security

This field guide is focused on keeping you and your team safe while you're on the road in complex and higher-risk environments.

By Grant Rayner

USD $14.99

Grant's Field Guides are essential for all travelers to higher-risk environments, regardless of experience. These guides equip you to handle the uncertainties that arise during travel, and I have personally integrated many of Grant's suggestions into my own approach for safer and more informed travel. Living in the US, I have - on more than one occasion - found many of the Field Guide suggestions helpful when traveling domestically.


The Field Guide to Transport Security is the fourth instalment in the Field Guide Series.

This Field Guide focuses on vehicle operations in higher-risk environments.

The first chapter sets the scene, describing the factors affecting transport security. We then propose a set of operating principles designed to guide your approach to vehicle operations when in higher-risk environments. From there, we focus on risk management, highlighting the risks associated with moving by vehicle.

Chapter 2 focuses on the operating environment. We discuss how to develop area familiarisation, how to use maps and applications to aid with orientation, how to build a common operating picture, and how to appreciate local norms.

Chapter 3 provides guidance on how to select vehicles in higher-risk locations. We cover vehicle procurement and selection, vehicle inspections and test drives, and ongoing monitoring. We get into practical details regarding the types of vehicles to use, such as whether to select vehicles with manual or automatic transmissions. We include useful checklists for basic vehicle inspections and test drives.

Chapter 4 explains how to prepare your vehicles. We cover daily safety inspections, minor vehicle modifications, and performance upgrades. We also get into detail regarding the different equipment you may want to install in your vehicle, including communications, navigation, recovery, and emergency equipment. We also cover refuelling, vehicle loading, and parking and security.

Chapter 5 focuses on drivers and driving. We discuss the pros and cons for self-driving versus using local drivers. We cover the importance of driver training and drivers skills and go into detail regarding different techniques to manage drivers, including briefings, setting expectations and the use of incentives. We also provide a set of driving principles. Lastly, we discuss how to deal with military convoys.

Chapter 6 covers different aspects of route planning, including route identification and route reconnaissance. We describe how to use strip maps and report lines, which are essential techniques when operating in higher-risk environments. We also describe how to scout routes.

Chapter 7 focuses on the key aspects of convoy operations, including convoy size, planning and preparation, and briefings. We also describe the differences between operating convoys in urban and rural environments. Lastly, we touch on buses and why they aren’t always a good option in higher-risk locations.

Chapter 8 covers security escorts. We discuss when a security escort should be considered. Then, we describe the differences between commercial security escorts and mandatory security escorts, including escorts by government forces. We explore different configuration options for security escorts. We wrap up this chapter by providing a reality check regarding the practical aspects of using security escorts.

Chapter 9 works through different aspects of using armoured vehicles in a higher-risk location. We explain when you should consider using armoured vehicles. We then describe how to analyse the different threats in your operating environment, which will enable you to select the appropriate level of protection. We spend a considerable amount of time going through different standards for armoured vehicles and explaining when each standard should be applied. From there, we break down the specific features of armoured vehicles.

Chapter 10 focuses on communications. We cover the key principles of communication, as relevant to vehicle operations. We also discuss the applicability of different types of communications equipment to vehicle operations, including mobile phones, radios, and satellite phones. We also touch on tracking technologies.

Chapter 11 details the options available to you to better manage your operational security. We go beyond just adjusting routes and timings, and cover techniques to manage your drivers and vehicles, counter surveillance, and effective radio procedure.

Chapter 12 explores different contingencies and provides broad guidance regarding how to respond to each contingency. We cover the basics, including breakdowns and accidents. We also provide instructions for dealing with checkpoints and roadblocks, improvised explosive devices (IEDs), landmines, sniper fire and small arms ambush. For each contingency, we describe how to prepare for that contingency and how you can avoid it. Then, we provide step-by-step guidance for how to respond to the contingency.

If you’re spending time in a higher-risk location and need to rely on vehicles to get around, you’ll find this Field Guide to be an invaluable resource. It’s full of practical advice that you’ll be able to apply regardless of your background and experience.

Table of contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Operating environment
  3. Vehicles
  4. Vehicle preparation
  5. Drivers and driving
  6. Route planning
  7. Convoy planning
  8. Security escorts
  9. Armoured vehicles
  10. Communications
  11. Operational security
  12. Contingencies

First published 30 October 2020

Updated to Version 3 on 28 November 2022

ISBN: 978-981-14-8589-3

177 pages