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QLD Police Union calls for increased firearms training

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  • QLD Police Union calls for increased firearms training

    Should be interesting to see how this plays out. I wonder if QLD looks down upon shooting at vehicles as much as Vic does.

    Firearm training for police officers should be a monthly requirement rather than yearly after a serious shooting in Brisbane yesterday, the police union says.

    A 29-year-old man remains in a critical condition at Princess Alexandra hospital after being shot in the head once and arms four times by police investigating the theft of a trailer and mower in Rochedale on Tuesday.

    Two police officers went to an acreage on Priestdale Road about 8.40am (AEST) to find the trailer, which was fixed with a GPS tracker.

    Queensland Police Union president Ian Leavers said a senior constable thought there was no-one in a four-wheel-drive on the property, but it allegedly started coming towards them with the trailer in tow.

    He said it took them by surprise, they were in fear of their lives and used their guns to protect themselves.

    The male passenger was not injured and was taken into custody.

    "There's a public expectation that police deserve to be trained to the best they possibly can be." Ian Leavers, Queensland Police Union president

    Mr Leavers, a Queensland Police Service firearms trainer of 15 years, told ABC 612 Brisbane he would like to see officers made to take on firearms training 12 times a year.

    Currently, officers are only required to attend one session yearly.

    "I know it comes as a cost, and there will always be people saying we can't afford it, it costs money for rounds," Mr Leavers said.

    "Being a former firearms trainer they restricted training because of the cost of the rounds ... that's how ludicrous it is.

    "But when it comes to training, law and order, police, health and education ... there are some thing we can't be penny pinching.

    "Police training is one of those because there's a public expectation that police deserve to be trained to the best they possibly can be."

    Mr Leavers said officers involved in shootings reacted differently.

    "Some may turn up next shift, some may take a couple of days off. This is very traumatic for police. It always is," he said.

    "The effects on police are everlasting ... police live with these things for the rest of their lives.

    "When they've had to defend their lives or the lives of others we are ordinary people and we have the same human emotions as everyone else."

    The Ethical Standards Command and the Crime and Corruption Commission were investigating the incident.

    Police trained to 'shoot to stop a treat'

    Mr Leavers said police officers were trained to "shoot to stop a threat" and not to maim or disable them.

    "If you draw the firearm and shoot you're shooting to stop a threat. That is what it is," he said.

    "It's impossible for anyone unless they are a marksman to shoot them in the left forearm ... it all happens so quickly.

    "Police are ordinary people, they're trained in requirements of what the police department requires ... but you can't aim to shoot someone in the hand, it's actually impossible.

    "You need to stop the threat. These are life and death situations and they happen within the blink of an eye."

    He said Tasers would not have been an option in this case.

  • #2
    Once a year? We do it twice a year and it's still not really enough. I thought Queensland would be a bit more pro-training than that.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Mulgrave600 View Post
      We do it twice a year and it's still not really enough.
      Is that due to budget/time constraints, or is it just seen as not being needed?

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      • #4
        Originally posted by CaptainKangaroo5691 View Post
        Is that due to budget/time constraints, or is it just seen as not being needed?
        Since mandatory operational safety training was introduced there's never been a perception we need to do it more than twice per year.

        When the current style of biannual training was introduced in about 1995 it was a two day package twice a year. It got changed to one day for a long time then in 2010 they reintroduced the two day package because there was some external criticism that we had lost our minimum force approach.

        In 2011 they went back to one day because the recruiting drive makes the two day package impossible to fit in. They cut back on driver training time too.

        I don't think they can justify losing those extra shifts and having to rotate people through more than twice a year would put impossible demands on the instructors.

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