TECHNOLOGY

Vulnerabilities caused a man with a teddy bear strapped to his chest to drive around US Air Force bases


A number of security deficiencies at a United States Air Force base in the UK allowed a man with a teddy bear on his chest to drive around barriers and almost get on a helicopter.

An official USAF investigation into the incident has now revealed a catalog of bugs that have had to increase the security of all American airbases.

The report revealed how the mentally ill man had access to the base through a gap between a fence and the entrance barriers, and a roadblock could not stop the right vehicle.

Airmen allowed the intruder to continue through a checkpoint after mistakenly interviewing a lieutenant colonel in a similar black Volvo twice.

In the security breach at RAF Mildenhall on December 18, 2017, eleven shots were fired on the vehicle by officers armed with handguns and rifles as the driver headed for two Osprey helicopters.

When the nameless man drove to the U.S. Air Force base in Suffolk, he showed a British passport and asked to speak to the president, the report said.

He managed to get to the Air Force Base by driving between pop-up barriers and a fence through a gap created when a lamp post was removed to give joggers more space.

Emergency services and personnel from the local air force base after the driver was arrested. Two Osprey helicopters are shown

The route the Volvo driver took when driving around barriers and driving over two active runways at RAF Mildenhall, Suffolk

The route the Volvo driver took when driving around barriers and driving over two active runways at RAF Mildenhall, Suffolk

Since the teddy bear could have been a suicide bomb, the runaway vehicle was rammed into the helicopter plane when the driver tried to board the plane via an access ramp.

When he pulled up to the base, the driver claimed to be from the Secret Service when he was approached by a plane guarding the entrance, but did not provide any documentation to prove this allegation.

After being told that he did not have the correct documentation to gain access to the base, the suspect pressed the two-foot brown teddy bear to his chest and began to rock back in fourth place, according to the Air Force Times.

The intruder managed to get around the barriers, dragged a plane over the sidewalk, and drove under the wings of two C-130 Hercules aircraft over active runways.

Then he tried to drive up a parked ospre's ramp before a security officer plane rammed into a car the intruder's vehicle and pushed it against the helicopter plane.

The man was arrested on suspicion of crime and criminal harm and detained under the Mental Health Act, but does not appear to have been charged with the incident.

When the driver was approached at the entrance before getting on the base, he said: "This is a national security issue, I have to speak to the President." Then he slowly drove his black Volvo forward.

According to documents received in a freedom of information request, he was ordered to stop the vehicle, but instead accelerated and managed to bypass the pop-up barriers easily.

The intruder was pinned to an Osprey helicopter (pictured) after driving around the entry barrier in RAF Mildenhall

The intruder was pinned to an Osprey helicopter (pictured) after driving around the entry barrier in RAF Mildenhall

The U.S. Air Force base was immediately blocked after the security breach in December 2017

The U.S. Air Force base was immediately blocked after the security breach in December 2017

This was due to a serious mistake in the gates, which left a gap of almost two meters between the gate and a fence after a street lamp pole had been removed five years earlier to make room for joggers.

Then he turned west on the Squawkin Hawk Highway and tried to enter the airfield for the first time in about half a mile, but was stopped by a locked gate.

The base was closed immediately and the security forces tried to respond. Some reportedly left some of their posts unguarded.

A lieutenant colonel who was driving a similar black Volvo was stopped at a roadblock and questioned twice by base pilots, but the intruder was only arrested when the confusion between the two vehicles was discovered.

Two planes tried to block the intruder's vehicle, and one tried to switch off the engine by reaching inside, but the man accelerated away.

Three officers believed the teddy bear was a suicide bomb and opened fire with their service pistols. They searched the car with bullets, but were unable to stop the vehicle.

The driver appeared to be mentally disturbed and wrong, witnesses said in reports released by investigators.

At some point a sergeant tried to grab the door frame of the vehicle, but was dragged across the sidewalk.

He let go when he noticed that the man was heading for a base vehicle and when he got up he fired his rifle at the intruder.

After the incident was investigated by the USAF, security at all bases was increased. Pictured RAF MIldenhall in the days after the 2017 incident

After the incident was investigated by the USAF, security at all bases was increased. Pictured RAF MIldenhall in the days after the 2017 incident

Although the driver was shot 11 times by base security, he managed to get a helicopter and tried to climb a ramp to the Osprey

Although the driver was shot 11 times by base security, he managed to get a helicopter and tried to climb a ramp to the Osprey

Brigadier General Andrea Tullos, who was director of the Air Force security forces at the time, said the incident caused the entire U.S. Air Force to review how it is approaching basic security.

He told the Air Force Times: "It was something of a wake-up call for us. This will remain an investigated case for us for years. Hopefully we have no other.

& # 39; The Mildenhall case prompted us to investigate and inspect every single installation access point in our entire Air Force that we have as a service, combined force, guard and reserve.

"It has caused us to look at many of our tactics, techniques, and procedures to say why this happened instead."

A total of 11 shots were said to have been fired at the driver during the 20-minute violation, according to a violence review committee that investigated the incident.

The investigation found that the four officers lawfully used lethal force to arrest the driver.

Immediately after the incident, the police closed the streets to RAF Mildenhall (picture)

Immediately after the incident, the police closed the streets to RAF Mildenhall (picture)

The intruder was pinned against an osprey (archive picture) by an aircraft in another vehicle when the driver tried to climb a ramp onto the helicopter plane

The intruder was pinned against an osprey (archive picture) by an aircraft in another vehicle when the driver tried to climb a ramp onto the helicopter plane

A & # 39; Tiger team & # 39; summoned to investigate the breach found mistakes made by the base and some security forces prevented them from detecting a "Level I threat".

Mildenhall's plan to defend the installation did not meet Air Force regulations, and security forces patrols were not deployed in the correct areas, the investigative team said.

The RAF Mildenhall is due to be closed after the United States has announced that it will move its operations from there to Germany. The website was previously a potential target for terrorist attacks.

In May 2016, Luton delivery driver Junead Khan, who wanted to attack U.S. soldiers outside RAF Mildenhall, was detained for life.

Then Secretary of Defense Sir Michael Fallon said in November 2016 that RAF Mildenhall was one of 56 Department of Defense sites to be closed.

The base, which is scheduled to be closed in 2022, houses the U.S. Air Force's 100th Air Refueling Wing and the 352nd Special Operations Wing.

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