Officers in Armed Response Vehicle (ARVs) have assisted with over 50 incidents reporting concern for a person or vulnerable missing people and have been sent to at least ten incidents to provide medical assistance since the extension of their roles was implemented last week.
In December 2017, Police Scotland announced that ARV officers will be deployed to a wider range of incidents, with an emphasis on public protection, vulnerability and speed of response.
The new deployment model was implemented on 7 May 2018 and since then, ARV officers across Scotland have:
• Assisted with over 50 incidents reporting missing people or concern for people
• Assisted at over 20 road traffic incidents, including broken down vehicles, dangerous and drink driving incidents, vehicle fires and stolen vehicle enquiries
• Attended at least ten calls to provide medical assistance
In Dundee on Monday (7 May), ARV officers assisted at the scene of a road traffic collision and provided medical treatment to a man who suffered a serious head injury. They also assisted colleagues from Road Policing with the enquiry at the scene.
A drunk man in Inverness was helped by ARV officers after reports of him walking in front of vehicles was received.
On Tuesday (8 May), ARV officers in Edinburgh were the closest unit to an ongoing domestic violence incident and attended where they then handed over to divisional colleagues on their arrival.
On Wednesday (9 May), ARV officers in Inverness assisted after a member of the public found a man unconscious. They attended to him until the arrival of an ambulance. Also on Wednesday during routine patrols, ARV officers in Aberdeen saw an elderly woman fall over and provided her with first aid and called an Ambulance.
In Dumfries, ARV officers provided treatment to a man with self-inflicted wounds and stabilised him until the arrival of an ambulance.
On Friday (11 May) ARV officers attended to provide support to a mountain rescue incident in Dumfries where they were able to assist thanks to their 4x4 and first aid capability.
ARV officers in Stirling assisted with searching for a vehicle reportedly being driven erratically on the M9 at Bannockburn as they were the closest unit on Saturday (12 May).
Also on Saturday, ARV officers from Dumfries assisted at the scene of a serious road traffic collision in South Lanarkshire where they provided advanced first aid until the arrival of an ambulance. However, unfortunately the man died from his injuries.
On Sunday (13 May), ARV officers in Inverness provided medical assistance to a man who had been found with injuries and called an ambulance for further treatment.
In Perth, officers attended to reports of a fight in the street and traced a man involved who was arrested in connection with allegedly being in possession of a weapon.
Assistant Chief Constable, Nelson Telfer, Specialist Support said: “ARV officers are highly trained and provide valuable assistance to their colleagues in local communities, as well as to other emergency services.
“As we have seen over the past week, their support to local officers has resulted in a number of missing people being traced safely and they have repeatedly provided assistance with their enhanced first aid skills.
“The deployment of these officers will at all times be overseen by specially-trained Inspectors across Scotland who will assess the appropriateness of calls they attend using established decision making and risk assessment processes.
“The number of armed officers makes up just over two per cent of the total number of police officers and we must remember that first and foremost, they are police officers. The emphasis of the extended role of ARV officers is on public protection, vulnerability and speed of response."