ATVs, scooters and personal watercraft
If officers patrol miles of beach, a rugged terrain or extremely congested narrow city streets and waterways, adding ATVs, scooters and personal watercraft to a fleet can be a no-brainer. The following companies make such products for law enforcement use:
It's possible for law enforcement agencies to obtain these vehicles at no cost via the AquaTrax Dealer Loan Program, says Mittleman. The program is administered through AquaTrax dealers who wish to participate in making units available to government agencies involved with safety, law enforcement and environmental monitoring. The loans are for one year. Eligible agencies can locate a local Honda AquaTrax dealer by visiting http://powersports.honda.com/watercraft/ and entering their ZIP code. Agencies also can contact dealers to see if they're participating in the program or are interested in doing so.
Honda makes a variety of ATVs. The FourTrax Foreman Rubicon ATV can handle the toughest jobs law enforcement can toss at it. Its features include a liquid-cooled, four-stroke single-cylinder 499cc engine with an overhead valve design; a Hondamatic transmission with a continuously variable design that eliminates belts, is compact, quiet, rugged and maintenance free; shifting options where the vehicle can be used in fully automatic mode or users can shift between five preset ratios with pushbutton ease, via Honda's Electric Shift Program (ESP); TraxLok, which allows users to choose between two-wheel and four-wheel drive, and front disc brakes.
The LT-Z400 is being used by some law enforcement agencies working in desert-like environments, and are finding the power and handling capabilities of this performance-oriented and "sport" ATV meets their needs, says Hansen. The LT-Z400's features include a 400cc four-stroke engine tuned for speed, a five-speed manual transmission, two-wheel drive, long-travel suspension, superior control and T-shaped seating to allow for comfort over the long haul.
The company sells a range of scooters. Among the most popular are the TGB Key West, a 49cc model (there are four different versions of the 49cc scooters) and the TGB Laser R9, a 151cc model (there are three versions of 151cc scooters). Any of its scooters are appropriate for law enforcement use, says Peirce.
"The 49cc scooters come restricted to 30 mph because some states have favorable laws that allow a rider to ride a 49cc scooter that goes less than 30 mph without a motorcycle license," he explains. "However, these can be de-restricted for police use and the top speed will increase to 38 to 42 mph."
The 151cc models can hit speeds of 65 mph. Although in most states officers wouldn't need a motorcycle license to operate a 49cc scooter, all states require a license to operate a 151cc, says Peirce, who advises agencies look into licensing requirements before replacing bicycle patrols with scooters.
The scooters are quite fuel efficient. The 151cc gets as much as 85 miles per gallon (mpg) while the 49cc gets over 60 mpg. These savings, and the fact that the scooters are not much more costly or demanding to maintain than a bike, makes them very attractive budget-wise.
"An agency can purchase 12 49cc scooters from us for the price on one patrol car," says Peirce. "And with four times the fuel mileage, it makes it easy to see the benefit of adding several new vehicles to a fleet without spending more than one patrol car."
Personal transportation devices
Personal transportation devices are changing the way police officers "walk the beat." The following is a sampling of the PTVs available.
The vehicle, which comes with several storage areas, will hold a total of 450 pounds, driver and gear. If desired, the company can put on a tow hitch, allowing users to pull a trailer and carry equipment, such as cones for example.
Depending upon the load, terrain and speed, the batteries will last for about 15 to 20 miles of use, says Jim Murphy, the company's director of business development. However, it is possible to go for longer hauls by using the company's quick-change battery system, which allows riders to almost immediately switch out batteries. Typically, users get 350 to 400 cycles out of a battery, so they will last anywhere from one to two years, Murphy points out. There's also an optional Battery Management System that attaches to the Chariot, which extends the battery lifespan by 300 percent and provides greater charge acceptance so the batteries recharge faster and accept the charge better.
"This is designed to be an in-town car that would be ideal for all the short trips around town that are so expensive and polluting for gas vehicles," she says. "Currently, it is the only production electric vehicle in the world faster than 25 mph."
The ZAPPY 3 PRO offers law enforcement several advantages, such as the ability to approach a crime scene with little or no noise, lowered operating expenses, reduced use of standard police vehicles and reduced emissions, says Brandao. The same can be said for the ZAP EV, which has fewer moving parts compared to an internal combustion engine and therefore requires far less maintenance and upkeep.
Personal armored protection
From the armored division of
"The Mobile Armored Device provides the protection and counter-fire capability needed in hostile firefight and hostage situations," Taylor explains. "Safety, mobility and tactical visibility are strengths of the MAD."
The vehicle travels at walking-pace speed and operates on two, 24-volt electric motors (they will remain charged for 2.5 hours). The motors drive the two front wheels independently, Taylor says One drives forward, the other in reverse, which allows the operator to spin the vehicle in a circle, ideal for use in areas such as malls, shopping centers, office buildings and schools/universities. It's protected with NIJ Level III armor and has gun ports on all sides.