MEDFORD, Ore. — A little pressure on the bumper of a suspect’s car is all it can take to safely end a police pursuit. It may seem like just a tap, but officers say it takes skill and precision to execute.
“When doing a maneuver like that, there’s a lot of things that can go wrong with it, and you need to make sure you’re doing it precisely the way we’re trained so that it ends the pursuit in the safest manner possible,” said Medford Police Officer Brandon Amaya.
Officer Amaya is new to Medford Police, but not to law enforcement. A seven year veteran, he knows training is key, and Friday Medford officers spent the day sharpening their skills.
“Mandatory training which keeps everybody sharp. They go over felony traffic stops, ranger, pit maneuvers,” said Officer Amaya.
The Medford Police Department trains regularly, every month, but P.I.T. maneuver training is only done once a year. Officials said the training is essential to applying it while on patrols.
“We know exactly what we’re doing, we know exactly how to do it, because in the field, you usually have just seconds to try and do this when basically out there we have all afternoon,” said Medford Police Lt. Mike Budreau.
Medford Police have a policy in which the move is only done at slow speeds, less than 35 miles per hour.
“At slower speeds, that spin is actually real minimal. It’s a tight turn that can be done in a short amount of space in a short amount of time,” said Lt. Budreau.
Officer Amaya said if and when the situation arises on patrols, the training takes over.
“You’ve trained so many times that the training kicks in and you’re able to complete the job you need to safely and resolve the situation in the safest manor possible,” said Officer Amaya.