Unit of competency details

CPPSEC3008A - Control security risk situations using firearms (Release 1)


Usage recommendation:
Is superseded by and equivalent to CPPSEC3114 - Control security risk situations using firearmsSupersedes and is equivalent to CPPSEC3008A Control security risk situations using firearms. 20/Jan/2019

Release Status:
ReleaseRelease date
1 1 (this release) 07/Apr/2011


SchemeCodeClassification value
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 091105 Police Studies  

Classification history

SchemeCodeClassification valueStart dateEnd date
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 091105 Police Studies  25/Nov/2008 
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Modification History

Not Applicable

Unit Descriptor

Unit descriptor 

This unit of competency specifies the outcomes required to determine when to use a firearm to respond to a life threatening situation. It requires the ability to analyse risk factors and intentions of persons and to maintain and store firearms and ammunition in accordance with legislative requirements.

This unit may form part of the licensing and legal requirements for the use of firearms by persons working in the security industry in those states and territories where these are regulated activities.

Application of the Unit

Application of the unit 

This unit of competency has application in the security industry in those roles involving operational activities. Competency requires legal and operational knowledge applicable to relevant sectors of the security industry. The knowledge and skills described in this unit are to be applied within relevant legislative and organisational guidelines.

Licensing/Regulatory Information

Refer to Unit Descriptor


Not Applicable

Employability Skills Information

Employability skills 

This unit contains employability skills.

Elements and Performance Criteria Pre-Content

Elements describe the essential outcomes of a unit of competency.

Performance criteria describe the required performance needed to demonstrate achievement of the element. Where bold italicised  text is used, further information is detailed in the required skills and knowledge section and/or the range statement. Assessment of performance is to be consistent with the evidence guide.

Elements and Performance Criteria



Maintain firearm safety .

1.1 Applicable provisions of legislative  and organisational requirements  relevant to the use of firearms  are identified and complied with.

1.2 Carriage of firearm is secure, protected, accessible in accordance with organisational procedures.

1.3 Firearm ammunition is obtained appropriate to firearm type and complies with manufacturer's instructions.

1.4 Protective equipment  is selected and used in accordance with Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) guidelines.

1.5 Pre -operational checks  of firearm are carried out to ensure safe and continuing operation of firearm.

1.6 Checks and procedures for the handling, transfer and loading or unloading of firearm are completed in accordance with manufacturer's instructions with due regard to the safety of self and others.

Draw firearm .

2.1 The need and opportunity to present firearm is assessed  and evaluated against identified risk factors and alternative response options.

2.2 Personal safety needs  are identified and assistance sought as required from relevant persons .

2.3 Communication is maintained with subject and reflects sensitivity to individual social and cultural differences .

2.4 Interpersonal techniques  are used to ensure instructions are clear, justified and in accordance with legislative requirements.

2.5 Firearm is drawn in a positive and controlled manner in accordance with organisational procedures.

Discharge firearm .

3.1 Personal positioning and stance ensures that handling and grip is secure to maintain control of firearm.

3.2 Threat is continually monitored and assessed to evaluate response options.

3.3 Tactical positioning  during incident is fluid and uses available cover and protection.

3.4 Discharge  of firearm is determined as only reasonable option to remove the threat in identified life-threatening situations.

Evaluate firearm use .

4.1 Presentation and discharge of firearm is reviewed and evaluated against circumstances of the incident.

4.2 Incident observations are provided accurately and constructively.

4.3 Review findings identify areas for improvement and recommendations for amendment of response procedures are provided for future practice.

4.4 Firearm is inspected and faults  are identified and reported in accordance with organisational procedures.

4.5 Relevant documentation  is completed and securely maintained with due regard to confidentiality in accordance with legislative requirements.

4.6 Effects of stress  and other issues related to own well-being are recognised and managed using appropriate stress management techniques .

Required Skills and Knowledge


This section describes the skills and knowledge and their level required for this unit.

Required skills 

  • apply first aid
  • apply problem solving strategies
  • calculate and estimate support requirements
  • communicate and negotiate using clear and concise language
  • communicate effectively with people from different social, cultural and ethnic backgrounds and of varying physical and mental abilities
  • determine response appropriate to incident situation
  • identify and comply with applicable legal and procedural requirements including 'use of force' guidelines
  • identify risk factors and assess degree of risk
  • interpret and follow instructions and procedures
  • maintain a firearm in a serviceable condition
  • minimise threat to self and to others by use of appropriate force options
  • observe and accurately record and report information
  • operate security and communications equipment
  • participate in review and debrief procedures
  • record, report and process information
  • review response strategies and make adjustments according to changing circumstances
  • use communication techniques to reduce the level of risk or conflict
  • use negotiation techniques to defuse and resolve conflict.

Required knowledge 

  • applicable legislative and other legal provisions including provisions governing the use of force and the duty of care under criminal and civil law
  • applicable licensing requirements for the use of firearms
  • communication techniques, codes and signals
  • correct use of equipment including personal protective equipment
  • documentation, reporting and reviewing and debriefing processes
  • emergency and evacuation procedures and instructions
  • empty hand techniques for firearms retention
  • firearm safety procedures including maintenance and storage procedures
  • first aid procedures and their application
  • incident management and methods of restraint
  • legal provisions relating to powers of arrest and 'use of force' guidelines
  • negotiation techniques for managing conflict
  • observation and monitoring techniques
  • organisational policies and procedures related to the use of firearms and incident management
  • powers and procedures for effecting an arrest
  • principles of effective communication including interpersonal techniques
  • problem-solving methods and techniques
  • security incidents and appropriate responses.

Evidence Guide


The evidence guide provides advice on assessment and must be read in conjunction with the performance criteria, required skills and knowledge, range statement and the Assessment Guidelines for the Training Package.

Critical aspects for assessment and evidence required to demonstrate competency in this unit 

A person who demonstrates competency in this unit must be able to provide evidence of:

  • applying correct procedures for selecting, fitting, using and maintaining protective equipment including body armour
  • demonstrating safe handling skills for use and maintenance of firearms
  • demonstrating effective empty hand techniques for firearms retention
  • identifying current and potential risk factors and their impact on the security risk situation
  • maintaining firearms licensing requirements
  • providing warnings and clear directions to subject using communication which engages minority groups
  • maintaining consistent accuracy when discharging firearm and reacting in a timely manner in the application and termination of force
  • evaluating and selecting response options within specified legal and strategic limits.

Context of and specific resources for assessment 

Context of assessment includes:

  • a setting in the workplace or environment that simulates the conditions of performance described in the elements, performance criteria and range statement.

Resource implications for assessment include:

  • access to plain English version of relevant statutes and procedures
  • access to a registered provider of assessment services
  • access to a suitable venue and equipment
  • assessment instruments including personal planner and assessment record book
  • work schedules, organisational policies and duty statements.

Reasonable adjustments must be made to assessment processes where required for people with disabilities. This could include access to modified equipment and other physical resources, and the provision of appropriate assessment support.

Method of assessment 

This unit of competency could be assessed using the following methods of assessment:

  • observation of processes and procedures
  • questioning of underpinning knowledge and skills.

Guidance information for assessment 

Assessment processes and techniques must be culturally appropriate and suitable to the language, literacy and numeracy capacity of the candidate and the competency being assessed. In all cases where practical assessment is used, it should be combined with targeted questioning to assess the underpinning knowledge.

Oral questioning or written assessment may be used to assess underpinning knowledge. In assessment situations where the candidate is offered a choice between oral questioning and written assessment, questions are to be identical.

Supplementary evidence may be obtained from relevant authenticated correspondence from existing supervisors, team leaders or specialist training staff.

Range Statement


The range statement relates to the unit of competency as a whole. It allows for different work environments and situations that may affect performance. Bold italicised wording, if used in the performance criteria, is detailed below. Essential operating conditions that may be present with training and assessment (depending on the work situation, needs of the candidate, accessibility of the item, and local industry and regional contexts) may also be included.

Legislative requirements may relate to :

  • apprehension and powers of arrest
  • Australian standards and quality assurance requirements
  • counter-terrorism
  • crowd control and control of persons under the influence of intoxicating substances
  • force continuum, use of force guidelines
  • general 'duty of care' responsibilities
  • inspection of people and property, and search and seizure of goods
  • licensing or certification requirements
  • privacy and confidentiality
  • relevant commonwealth, state and territory legislation, codes and national standards for:
  • anti-discrimination
  • cultural and ethnic diversity
  • environmental issues
  • equal employment opportunity
  • industrial relations
  • OHS
  • relevant industry codes of practice
  • trespass and the removal of persons
  • Weapons Acts and regulations.

Organisational requirements may relate to :

  • access and equity policies, principles and practices
  • business and performance plans
  • client service standards
  • code of conduct, code of ethics
  • communication and reporting procedures
  • complaint and dispute resolution procedures
  • emergency and evacuation procedures
  • employer and employee rights and responsibilities
  • OHS policies, procedures and programs
  • own role, responsibility and authority
  • personal and professional development
  • privacy and confidentiality of information
  • quality assurance and continuous improvement processes and standards
  • resource parameters and procedures
  • roles, functions and responsibilities of security personnel
  • storage and disposal of information.

Firearm may be :

  • revolver
  • semi-automatic pistol
  • shotgun.

Protective equipment may include :

  • body armour
  • bullet proof vest
  • fire proof clothing
  • gloves
  • head protection
  • hearing protection
  • masks
  • protective shields
  • safety glasses
  • slash proof gloves.

Pre -operational checks may include :

  • checking log books and maintenance schedule
  • cleaning, priming, tightening, basic repairs and adjustments
  • identification and segregation of unsafe or faulty equipment for repair or replacement
  • observing and monitoring for correct operation
  • visual checks for wear and tear.

Assessment may involve an analysis of :

  • access to weapons
  • available resources and team backup
  • known information about people involved in the incident
  • known information about the circumstances of the incident
  • nature of the incident
  • observation of the environment and physical conditions
  • potential and triggers for escalation or defusing
  • range of response options available
  • safety of self and others.

Personal safety needs may include :

  • access to emergency services
  • access to specific security equipment
  • additional training
  • appropriate vehicle
  • clarification of own responsibility and competence
  • maintaining regular communication
  • personal protective equipment
  • provision of back-up support
  • working in a team.

Relevant persons may include :

  • colleagues
  • emergency services personnel
  • medical personnel
  • specialist teams
  • supervisor.

Social and cultural differences may relate to :

  • dress and personal presentation
  • food
  • language
  • religion
  • social conventions
  • traditional practices
  • values and beliefs.

Interpersonal techniques  may involve:

  • active listening
  • being non-judgemental
  • being respectful and non-discriminatory
  • control of tone of voice and body language
  • cultural awareness and sensitivity in use of language and communication
  • demonstrating flexibility and willingness to negotiate
  • effective verbal and non-verbal communication
  • maintaining professionalism
  • providing and receiving constructive feedback
  • providing sufficient time for questions and responses
  • reflection, summarising and paraphrasing
  • two-way interaction
  • use of plain English
  • use of positive, confident and cooperative language.

Tactical positioning may include :

  • ability to move between cover
  • access to cover or concealment
  • capacity to reload or unload with speed loaders or magazines
  • capacity to withdraw
  • safety of self and others
  • stances (eg standing, kneeling, prone).

Discharge :

  • must be in accordance with relevant state and territory regulatory or licensing requirements relating to accuracy and course of fire.

Common faults may include :

  • mechanical failure
  • misfiring
  • misuse
  • non-inspection of firearm prior to loading.

Documentation may include :

  • activity logs
  • incident reports
  • request for assistance forms
  • vehicle and personnel movements
  • written and electronic reports.

Effects of stress may include :

  • frustration
  • inability to concentrate
  • increasing aggression
  • over-talking
  • tiredness
  • uncoordinated movements.

Stress management techniques may include :

  • conscious use of personal recreational activities
  • counselling
  • formal debriefing processes
  • informal exploration of incidents with team members and supporters
  • review of practice and resources.

Unit Sector(s)

Unit sector 


Competency field

Competency field