The Invisible Family

There are new diapers on the bed and toys in the driveway. An officer instantly knows that there are children here. Even though the kitchen harbors bomb-making ingredients, his approach will have to be adjusted.


The shoes on the porch suggest a large man. A bumper sticker that says, "I Shoot First, Then Check ID" is stuck to a window covered from the inside with foil. The address is that of a man who just purchased a lot of fertilizer for a bare dirt yard.


The people who "live" in these houses are fictitious. However, small clues could mean the difference between a successful entry and arrest or a disaster. Learning to read these clues enable better decision-making and action.


Street Signs!

Playas Training and Research Center has an extensive residential (urban) range, consisting of about 100 three-bedroom, two-bath houses on multiple streets.


Some streets are used mainly for law enforcement training; houses are fully staged with furniture, decorations, kitchenware, and clothing and bedding. There are toys in the yards, cars in the driveways, and curtains in the windows. This "surburban" range is used for hostage situations, explosive breaches, terrorist activity, tracking, search and seizure, evasive driving, and traffic stops. At the end of one street, a bus is used to simulate IED explosions. An innocent vehicle on another street harbors a homemade bomb.


Some of the range is used for military or security exercises--search and rescue, emergency preparedness, infrastructure protection. A driver learns evasive driving to protect the dignitary in his charge from a van of terrorists . A soldier practices infiltration on a dark night. A helicoptor lands to extract a downed pilot or brings a team to search rubble for survivors. An agent tracks a fugitive across two neighborhoods and into a house filled with explosives.


Infinite possibilities and scenarios. One purpose: Engage knowledge and decision-making in a sensory-rich environment to create practice in situational reaction.


A quiet street one moment, a dangerous challenge the next moment

Time in Playas -
car and toy bus stop swing set car bomb front yard dresser set table front room bicycle front room closet and clothes child's bed living room child's dresser bathroom dresser crib with toys kitchen coffee table dummies in living room yard with bicycles
Click picture for slide show

Links and News


“Whatever you believe with emotion becomes your reality. You always act in a manner consistent with your innermost beliefs and convictions.” -Brian Tracy