Securing the officers weapon when the are injured is both vital and tricky. Officer involved MVA's the officer is trained to protect their weapon at all cost If the officer is injured to the point that he needs to treated The officer involved should turn over their weapon to a secure person, usually a supervisor however that is not always possible. Therefore, it important that a fire officer may charged with the responsibility of properly securing the weapon or weapons including, Gun belts, pistol, tasers, and shotgun. We are not used to doing this and need to be aware that the Sr. officer on scene may be by default be that individual if an appropriate police officer is not available
Really, looking at the question, what really is more difficult or complex with extrications on a police car? Nothing.
Police cars are not armored vehicles or present any further challenge than a non-police model. So they may carry weapons, yeah so, so could any number of private vehicles out there. I would love to know of or see a police involved crash when extrication was needed where there weren't already other PD on scene where they could take care of the weapons etc.
Not long ago our dept responded for a similar event when a police cruiser was impacted by a drunk and speeding driver. Extrication was needed, the cop involved was dazed, most likely concussed, along with other injuries. There was nothing different in the way the crews handled the car and getting the pt out, the PD on scene took the officer's gun belt etc.
The biggest difficulty we have here when dealing with a fleet, is that some of us know all the officers that work our area personally, so emotions will run a little lot higher. As far as the extrication of the injured officer goes, the process and tactics will be the same. The weapons are secured, whether by LE or a department chief officer.
As far as vehicle construction goes, law enforcement vehicles are not much different than their civilian counterparts, but there is one difference that sets the two apart. And that is the security barrier between the front seat and back seat. This piece of equipment could pose some difficulty in an extrication operation by restricting some of the working room.
During one of my extrication training this past Febraury for Robeson Community College in Lumberton,NC I was fortunate to have three retired police vehicles to extricate on. We did scenarios base extrication on a victim trapped in the rear passenger of the cage crushed down on him, police officer trapped in the front driver side with the roll cage crushed down on him, we even had one vehicle that was used to transport the K-9. It is not uncommon to have this type of scenario in your response area.
John K Johnson (JJ)
Fully Involved Training, LLC
I do think that emotional aspect does play a part in all honesty.
If you are in a very large city I would agree with you. However, in medium to small cities, we know our police offices as well as our own firefighters and their families.
Potential issues I see (but nothing we can't work around):
Lutan 1 lists many good points. I can only add that you probably will have the additional psychological/scene control issue of numerous excited law enforcement officers wanting to help. Most of our local LEO's still carry flares that burn.
That picture is actually one that my department responded to in DC. Not sure what would be more difficult.