Driving and Shooting

Oct. 15, 2020
What does the fourth quarter of 2020 hold for us? Buckle up...

If there are any two things a law enforcement professional regularly does that bring with them an inherent level of risk, they are driving and shooting. It’s no surprise that the tools used are two of the most dangerous tools in the law enforcement inventory: a vehicle and a firearm. 

Where vehicles are concerned, we regularly spend whole shifts driving them, sometimes in very unsafe conditions (or at unsafe speeds). We use them as cover, concealment, office and “safe” space during any given shift. From the beginning of our academy days, we’re taught what parts will stop bullets and which won’t. We’re taught how to drive them in an emergency fashion, sometimes how to use them as weapons, how they can accidentally be used as weapons, basic maintenance, and more. We’re taught how to interact with them for safety when we’re on foot and yet, for all that, we still have way too many officers killed and injured in and around their vehicles. Hopefully, the information we share in LET and online on Officer.com will help you and/or your agency in reducing the number of injuries and deaths to your officers while increasing the efficiency of traffic enforcement efforts—which decreases death and injury to those in the community you serve.

On the firearms side, there are so many handguns, long guns, shotguns, less-lethal munition launchers, and more that we have to train with. Much of the public believes we are all expert shots who can never miss, while most firearms instructors get frustrated with the challenge of simply getting some officers to hit the target on a non-stress, beautiful weather day. Guns in general are an integral part of our life, both on and off duty, usually starting the day we graduate from the academy. As such, firearms sometimes get taken for granted, handled with assumed safety (that really isn’t), and sometimes outright neglected. In this issue we took a look at some training related topics but nothing we write can take the place of individual awareness and responsibility. Every reader has to take that on and carry it with the proper importance and attentiveness.

Let’s not forget it’s October and the silly season is approaching. Given the track record for 2020 so far, does it surprise anyone that Halloween this year has a full moon and is on a Saturday night? Will the existence of COVID-19 impact how communities celebrate Halloween for Trick-or-Treating? Will it affect how parents handle candy before letting the kids get into it? Will it affect how parties are held and how many can attend? One thing I bet won’t be effected is how drunk some folks get and the level of stupid we get to deal with. That’s one thing that never seems to change.

As you do that, be safe. Have your plan. Staff your plan. Work your plan. Make sure all your officers go home safe at the end of the night. We want them all around to celebrate Thanksgiving next month and Christmas the month after that. Hopefully, 2020 will go out quietly and peacefully. We can hope.

Stay safe!

About the Author

Lt. Frank Borelli (ret), Editorial Director | Editorial Director

Lt. Frank Borelli is the Editorial Director for the Officer Media Group. Frank brings 20+ years of writing and editing experience in addition to 40 years of law enforcement operations, administration and training experience to the team.

Frank has had numerous books published which are available on Amazon.com, BarnesAndNoble.com, and other major retail outlets.

If you have any comments or questions, you can contact him via email at [email protected].

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