Queensland Police will soon be among the best protected frontline officers in the world, with new state of the art vests to be rolled out across the state.
In good news for our frontline officers, the Queensland Police Service (QPS) has signed a contract to ensure the next generation of vests are on-line as soon as possible to enhance officer safety.
Police Minister Mark Ryan said the new integrated load-bearing vests (ILBV) would see police better protected, with the combined ballistic and edged weapon safety features part of police officer’s operational uniform for the first time in Queensland’s 168-year policing history.
“Our officers put their lives on the line whenever they respond to highly volatile and dangerous situations, and they should be protected with the latest technology in officer safety equipment,” Minister Ryan said.
“The ILBV will not only allow officers to safely carry their firearm, taser, baton, handcuffs, radio and body-worn camera while performing their duties, but most importantly – provide added protection against offenders who may be armed with knives or firearms.”
“The Palaszczuk Government is supporting our world-class Service and ensuring the safety of our police and communities.”
Commissioner Katarina Carroll said the $20 million-plus initiative would be a significant boost to officer safety.
“We have undertaken extensive operational trials of the ILBV in differing climates and situations across the state to inform the final design,” Commissioner Carroll said.
“I’m very pleased we will see each frontline officer issued with their individual integrated load-bearing vest to improve their safety as they continue protecting our communities.”
Commissioner Carroll said currently, officers must wear an overt ballistic vest on top of a load bearing vest to be protected from a firearm threat.
“By combining these two important pieces of equipment, our officers can achieve that same protection in one vest, to be worn at all times while on duty,” Commissioner Carroll said.
Queensland Police Union President Ian Leavers congratulated the Government for this significant investment that will benefit front-line police.
“I’ve been a strong advocate for this equipment, insisting it’s a fit for purpose design and with a high protection rating that provides every officer wearing it the best opportunity to go home safely at the end of their shift.”
“The safety of our frontline police is an absolute priority and I’m confident this ILBV with its full armour will become an essential part of equipment for first response police.”