Failed London Bombing

Jake Buckland Explosion Mitigation

Failed London Bombing

Failed London bombing occurred on this day (July 20) in 2005. Five terrorists set out on a mission to explode the transportation system in London, England. The terrorists placed bombs at Shepherd Bush, Oval and Warren Street stations including on a bus in Bethnal Green. The fifth terrorist was spotted dumping his bomb never having set it off. The four remaining bombs exploded but didn't have the mass casualty effect the terrorists desired. Instead, the bombs only exploded the detonator resulting in a minimal explosion. There was one reported injury sustained from the explosions. After the failed London bombing, each terrorist fled the scene.

All four terrorists were eventually caught and brought to justice having been found guilty of conspiracy to commit murder. Each received life in jail with no possibility of parole and a minimum of 40 years in prison. The terrorists were identified as Muktar Said Ibrahim, Ramzi Mohammed, Hussain Osman, and Yasin Hassan Omar.

What if?

If successful, these failed London bombings would have caused a mass causality event. London would have been locked down, and train stations closed with general curfews instituted. Hospitals would have been on alert for mass casualties and additional staff ready on standby. There's no doubt that police and intelligence personnel are doing their best to stop these types of attacks. From instituting the world's largest Closed-Circuit Television (CCTV) mass surveillance to intercepting electronic surveillance on citizens. These very tools led to the successful capture of all the terrorists. Yet, it wasn't enough to prevent this attack.

Analysis - What can I do to stop this from happening in my community?

Lessons learned from our wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have shown us one fact. A handshake can generate more actionable intelligence than any form of "enhanced interrogation techniques." Simply put, talking to our neighbors with respect and courtesy and sharing a single purpose helps in our fight to combat terrorism. At home, our shared mission is to raise our kids in a safe environment.

Many Criminologists agree that prevention will not occur from more electronic surveillance rather more communication with the Muslim community. This is for several reasons, one of the most important is that a professional terrorist doesn't use modern telecommunication systems to organize. Instructions are usually communicated in-person and in isolation, not over cell phones or satellites.

Our best way to generate intelligence and defuse any future attack is to have a positive dialogue with everyone, especially our Muslim community. From community consultations and outreach in Mosques to saying hello to our neighbors. Changing the hearts and minds of future terrorists starts at home.


At Practical Emergency Kits, we are neither survivalists nor mindless followers of government. We believe in family, country and human life. A substantial component of that belief is preparation. Practical Emergency Kits was founded on the principal of providing families with emergency kits and practical knowledge that's grounded in scientific research. We believe knowledge is the best way of conquering fear.

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