Law enforcement is a dangerous career. The biggest threats to officers’ safety are sometimes unexpected, such as vehicle crashes. In their quest to solve crimes, many officers leave their safety behind. These tips will help you protect yourself and ensure that you’ll be able to stop criminals for a long time.
Use the Safety Equipment Available to You
Officers on the force have many simple life-saving technologies available to them, such as seatbelts and body armor. However, many refuse to wear them because they believe that protective equipment slows them down. In the end, that choice is more deadly than a few seconds delay in an incident.
Wear your protective equipment despite the discomfort. If you are worried about a bulletproof vest or seatbelt slowing you down, practice your response times. Seatbelts are vital since car crashes are the most dangerous killers of officers on duty.
Slow Down Your Response
For many police officers, speed is of the essence when responding to calls. However, hastiness could get you killed. Thinking through your actions for a few moments before responding can help prevent fatal mistakes such as barreling into a dangerous situation. Prioritize your safety when responding to an incident and improve your awareness of potential dangers.
Especially for officers who have been on the force for a long time, it can be tempting to go through the motions. However, each new situation could have a dangerous twist. Taking time to check your equipment and make sure that you are alert will improve your response and could save your life.
Slow Down Your Driving
As mentioned before, car crashes are the number-one killer of police officers on duty. Speeding and reckless driving is, unfortunately, a large part of many crashes. Slowing down even a little bit can save your life. Often, you will catch the perpetrator anyway if you drive safely.
Law enforcement fatalities should not be as high as they are. A few simple steps can protect you and other officers from danger and could even save your life.