More police get Taser, gun training

Last updated 12:17 17/02/2014

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More New Zealand police will be trained to use firearms and Tasers from July this year.

Following feedback from police as part of a revamp to training structure, about 700 additional staff will be trained at Level 1, meaning they will attend "high risk" situations armed with Tasers or firearms, New Zealand Police said today.

In March last year, the concept of three levels of training was introduced to Police Integrated Tactical Training (PITT) - that is training received by all deployable staff.

Assistant Commissioner Operations, Mike Rusbatch, said staff trained at Level 1 will attend "higher risk situations" which may require Tasers or firearms, while Level 2 responders will receive Glock pistol training, and Level 3 will be available for lower risk cases.

"All of our staff, regardless of responder level, will receive core tactical training in essential techniques, including defensive tactics, handcuffs, pepper spray and baton, which are effective in resolving the vast majority of incidents we attend," he said.

These additional enhancements are in keeping with our focus in ensuring staff safety on the job and meeting our Prevention First objectives."

Communication would remain the preferred and primary method of diffusing situations, he said.

The changes will be introduced from July 1.

- About 5700 of police's 8,100 district staff will receive training in the M4 rifle, Glock pistol and Taser as Level 1 responders.

- About 2100 district staff will be Level 2 responders, receiving training in the Glock pistol.

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- The Dominion Post

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