POLICE Magazine

NOV 2018

Magazine for police and law enforcement

Issue link: https://policemag.epubxp.com/i/1048250

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Page 14 of 62

10 POLICE NOVEMBER 2018 M any people do their best to avoid driving in bad weath- er. ey do it only when they get caught in a storm or if they absolutely have to be somewhere like work or school. As law enforcement officers, you rarely have the option of staying at home and waiting out the storm. And there is evidence that driving in dangerous weather conditions is one of the reasons so many officers are killed in patrol vehicle accidents. In most years, more officers are killed in vehicle crashes than in felonious attacks. So far 2018 is an exception, with more than twice as many officers killed by felonious gunfire than in on-duty crashes. Still, one of the big differences between accidental death and murders is that accidents can be pre- vented more easily because there is by definition no malicious intent involved in an accident. e best way to prevent accidents is to learn to recognize the hazards and train on how to prevent them from causing a tragedy. And if any law enforcement agency knows how to train officers how to drive in dangerous weather it's a state highway patrol. Consider the Michigan State Police, an agency that is charged with performing patrol and investigative duties in much of the state while also serving as the highway patrol. Recruit training in the MSP academy requires each stu- dent to complete 50 hours of driver instruction, including 40 hours behind the wheel and 10 hours of classroom work. The Michigan State Police provides extensive vehicle-operation training to its recruits. MSP training includes skid recovery on a skid pad (top), so that officers can learn to drive safely on icy roads. HOW TO DRIVE IN DANGEROUS WEATHER When road conditions turn nasty you have to slow down, and maintain control of your vehicle and yourself. How To... DAVID GRIFFITH PHOTOS: MICHIGAN STATE POLICE

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