OUR LOCAL law enforcement agencies face an ever-challenging task, as the Ohio Valley is home to increasing drug traffic and violent crime.
Many departments are battling a lack of manpower and funding. With that being the case, any type of training available to our safety forces can prove a major asset.
Martins Ferry and Bridgeport police officers were afforded such an opportunity recently. They were privy to training with the Ohio Peace Officer Training Mobile Academy.
The training consisted of two simulators that gave officers the chance to go through real-life scenarios. One simulator focused on driving situations such as pursuing suspects and chases. The second simulator consisted of firearm scenarios.
Both situations come into play all too often these days in our area.
The driving simulator takes officers through various scenarios to where they are doing intersection clearing, working an active pursuit.
The firearms training, much like the driving simulator, consists of several episodes that give the officers a refresher on how to handle dangerous situations.
The officers worked in pairs and went through incidents such as domestic calls, active shooters in schools and traffic stops. Once the scenario played out, a debriefing was held where the officers were able to talk about what they didn't do and why he or she did not take the shot.
Participants agreed that officers have done better when they are in their own environment rather then leaving for a few days to go to training.
All of the Bridgeport and Ferry officers taking part were praiseworthy with the training, noting it was pertinent, realistic and informative.
We commend the Ohio Peace Academy for bringing its training to Eastern Ohio. The sessions will provide information that will create a safer environment for our police departments while also yielding greater effectiveness.