What are indicators?
In areas where mines have been used, there are usually signs that they are there even if the mines themselves are not visible. Some signs – like minefield fences and destroyed vehicles – should be obvious, but many are harder to see and may not be recognised without special training. All of these signs are known as `indicators' and include a range of components, packaging and clues seen in the immediate surroundings.
These images have been prepared as a training resource for mine action programs. Used within your existing structured training program, this material is intended to explain the significance of indicators and to enhance people's ability to recognise danger areas among the scenes and situations that they encounter every day.
Instruction on mined area indicators is intended for use at two levels:
For local people, as part of general mine awareness training.
In greater depth for deminers and minefield survey teams.
These images show a number of dangerous situations and then highlight the indicators that might serve as warnings. Also shown are images of some mines and unexploded ordnance (UXO) as they appear in the field; dirty, partially concealed or overgrown, and at odd angles. The content is not comprehensive, but many of the lessons have a general relevance. When understood, these principles can then be applied to other situations and devices that are not covered here.
Using the material
This material is a resource for use by mine action trainers to enhance existing programs. It is not intended for use in isolation, but as part of a structured course taught by qualified and experienced personnel. For each lesson, the trainer should select a small number of sheets which best illustrate the principles to be taught, and are most appropriate to the overall theme. Awareness of indicators need not be taught as a separate subject, but can be integrated with more general awareness or recognition training.
Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the content, Andy Smith has no control over the way that it will be used, and therefore cannot accept liability for any loss arising from use of this material.
There are no restrictions on reproducing this material for Humanitarian (not for direct profit) use.
This material was prepared by Andy Smith. Design, photographs, picture preparation and text are all by Andy Smith.
Andy Smith acknowledges a particular debt of thanks to Ken O’Connell of MgM, and to MECHEM and MgM, and to US DoS for indirect financial support via GWHF during the production of the resource (special thanks to Joe Trocino).
Many individuals and organisations in Angola offered advice and helped to gather the information and images for this resource. Special thanks to General Helder Cruz of INAROEE; Mario Nunes of NPA; Theo van Dyk of MECHEM, and Mark Manning and “Tommo” of MAG.
Finally, thanks to the translator, Cláudio de Sousa.
At the suggestion of the original Technical Editor, previous releases of this material included the implication that every photograph was of a real situation. It was felt that this would add authority to the lessons. In fact it has attracted criticism of the author/photographer for taking risks. The truth is that several of the scenes reproduced were recreated for the pictures using disarmed hazards. Long lenses and computer manipulation were also used to keep all risks to a minimum.
The resource is divided into titled 'Scenes', usually with several associated photographs and explanatory text. Click on the title to view it.