A vast majority of officers around the United States carry a TASER® — a less-lethal tool that uses electricity to lock up a subject’s muscles in order to temporarily subdue them. They are generally deployed when an officer reasonably feels that the subject is a threat, but not enough to warrant use of deadly force. Often, TASERs are used on a subject that is highly resistive during arrest.
A TASER is sometimes referred to as a conducted electrical weapon (CEW) and comes in a few different models, all designed by AXON©. They can be aimed using a laser and typically targeted away from the upper chest, neck and head.
While TASER tools have helped preserve life in situations where a subject must be controlled, there are instances where they have been used incorrectly and put lives in danger – or even taken lives, such as the death of Jared Lakey who was repeatedly shocked by a TASER 53 times.
TASER training for police officer recruits on the use of these less-lethal devices and even allowing existing officers to brush up on TASER tactics and usage can help mitigate the chance that someone is unnecessarily harmed.
Considerations for TASER Deployment in Law Enforcement TASER Training
What Officers Should Keep in Mind with TASER Training for Police Officers
TASER devices are very helpful in controlling a resisting or violent subject in a way that is not likely to cause serious harm, but using them improperly can be dangerous. Because of this, understanding how a TASER works and how to properly deploy it under various circumstances is crucial. Below are some considerations law enforcement officers must remember and train for.
As mentioned previously, there are parts of the body that should be avoided when aiming. While this may not always be possible if a subject is moving erratically or in an unconventional position, it is generally acceptable to target the legs, arms, abdominal and hip area. Officers must intentionally avoid the head, neck and upper chest area to prevent serious injury.
While some TASER cartridges can launch probes up to 21 feet, a good distance tends to be between 7 and 15 feet. This allows for a good hit probability and reactionary gap while maintaining slack in the wires.
In order to obtain neuromuscular incapacitation (NMI), both probes must be close enough for electricity to flow in the body or jump the air gap. It is possible to obtain NMI with only one probe, but only if it lands on a conductive surface, so this should not be relied upon. The top probe trajectory is horizontal and the bottom probe is angled downward.
In some cases, a medical professional may need to evaluate the subject after TASER exposure. An officer can check vitals and ensure the subject has a pulse and functional breathing, and call EMS if there are indications of a medical emergency. Additionally, if injury has occurred due to a fall after being exposed to a TASER, medical personnel may need to arrive on scene.
Law Enforcement Simulator TASER Training
The Realistic, Certified Training Method on TASER Training for Police Officers
With the large number of properties to consider before, during and after TASER deployment, it is clear why TASER training for law enforcement is needed to operate the device effectively to minimize the risk of harm. In the past, misuse of a TASER or improper weapon transitions (TASER and firearm mix-ups) have resulted in injury, death and subsequent lawsuits. Lack of training, of course, is never an excuse.
Among VirTra’s line of laser-based less-lethal tools designed for simulator use include TASER simulation cartridges such as the V-X26P™ and V-TX2™. These direct drop-in replacement cartridges help mimic the firing of real X2® and X26® TASER devices within VirTra simulators with accurate tracking and re-arc capabilities.
To go along with these tools, VirTra offers certified curriculum for law enforcement TASER training. The “TASER Targeting” V-VICTA™ course provides two hours of NCP-certified coursework designed to be used in tandem with VirTra’s simulated scenarios. Like other V-VICTA courses, TASER Targeting training for police officers includes a lesson plan, slide presentation, testing materials, class surveys, rosters and more.
The goal of the curriculum and hardware is to ensure officers can successfully and accurately deploy a TASER in the preferred targeting area to decrease the risk of harm. Law enforcement officers must also know when to use the TASER and proper steps to take once a subject has been hit with the probe(s).
If your agency would like to experience realistic TASER training for police officers coursework and simulator scenarios, click the button below to talk to a product specialist about our law enforcement TASER training options.