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Friday, March 02, 2007

Hey, What's in that Car, Anyway?

Like duty belts, uniforms, and weapons, what an officer has in his or her car depends on the agency. The following list contains both, but I’ve starred the things that you will most likely always find.


Interior of the car

* Two mikes, not in any specific place, although I’ve mostly seen the radio mike attached to the dash.
One for radio (that enables the officer to communicate with dispatch)
One for P.A. system (this enables the officer to communicate with occupants of a vehicle from the inside of his or her car)

* Flashlight—sometimes rechargeable

* Forms (I’ve seen different officers carry these in different places. Sometime they will build or buy a little wooden box-like thing that fits behind the control boxes in between the two front seats.
*Missing persons form
*Towed vehicle form
*Ticket book
*Warning book
*Safety & Equipment Repair book
*Parking tickets
*Incident reports
*Civil citations
*Criminal citations

* Map book
Criminal law guide
Traffic law guide
Hazardous materials guide

* Control boxes are in between the two front seats and are usually made up of three components:
*A Communications box
*A Siren box
*A Flashing lights box

Each of these has buttons and switches to turns things on and off.
These components are like a face plate. The radio unit that controls them is in the trunk.

Not all agencies have computers in their cars. The ones I’ve seen are really cool. The officers can send instant message to each other (like, wanna meet at Burger King in thirty?). The really great thing about the computer is the ability to access the driving records and license information of the people stopped for traffic offenses. This saves the officer and the dispatcher time—the officer can look the information up instead of radioing into the dispatcher for the information.

Locking shotgun rack/shotgun.
I haven’t seen most of the officers around here carrying their shotguns inside their cars. Often, they are in the trunk.

In the trunk

First Aid Kit
Fire Extinguisher
Evidence collection kit (finger print kit)
Evidence tape (Yellow marking off tape)
Tape measure for accident scene
First aid kit
Coveralls (sometimes)
WMD (Weapons of Mass Destruction) gear (Gas mask, chemical suit, rubber gloves, boots, and duck tape)
Riot gear (helmet and riot baton)

Trunk Vault/Locking safe with shotgun and/or other weapons, depending on what other specialize weapons the officer is qualified to use. (For instance, a SWAT team member would carry a semi-automatic rifle.


These cars do not have lights on top of the roof. The lights will usually be in the windshield, grill, or parking lamps.

They also have all of the other stuff the marked car has according to agency.


These cars have nothing in them to identify them as police cars. They are usually used by narcs and registered to fictitious names/addresses.


Blogger Robin Caroll said...

Thanks for this, girl. Nice to know.

8:40 AM  

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