Duncan Police Department sharpening their driving pursuit skills
DUNCAN, Okla. (KSWO) - 405 people died in 2020 across the U.S. connected to a police chase they were not involved in, according to an Oklahoma Highway Patrol Report.
This is why officers at the Duncan Police Department are working on sharpening their driving skills through pursuit training.
“We make sure we get those skills back up and in return what that does is, it protects the public. That way people aren’t crashing into people or driving in an erratic manner where it makes the public crash their own vehicle,” Sgt. Layle Baker said.
Officers raced through cones representing people, other cars, or objects during the training. The goal? Make it through the course without knocking anything down.
Lieutenant David Woods, a 25-year veteran of the department, said this is especially important because police officers spend most of their shift driving.
“Every time we train we are always picking up little things that you didn’t know before and it really helps over a career to have those things put together,” Lt. Woods said.
Sgt. Baker has been with the department for 31 years. He said communicating with people is one of the most important skills because it helps to stop conflict before it happens.
“Always something new is talking to people. Everybody is different, so you have to be able to learn how to talk to people. Or either deescalate the situation you’re facing and be able to calm them down so that you can get the desired result that you want,” Sgt. Baker said.
Lieutenant Woods said police officers deal with high-stress situations every day, and their training is what should get them through that stressful time successfully.
“In every situation whether it’s driving training or in physical combat or whatever, you always fall back on the level of training that you have. So any training that we can do to make these guys better is so important because you will fall back on those training in those stressful situations,” Lt. Woods said.
Duncan police will continue training through the new year, starting with a Force-on-Force Training next month.
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