Law enforcement personnel must assess dangerous situations quickly and safely. Body armor protects from bullets, but unseen hazards—like toxic chemicals—are more challenging to mitigate. And in the past, chemical detection devices were too cumbersome and expensive to use on a regular basis.
Lightweight, cost effective and easy to use, the Chameleon bolsters law enforcement professionals’ ability to identify dangerous conditions. The simple color-identification system makes readings easy and reliable, even under the most stressful and complex conditions. And it’s hands-free, which allows the user to carry a weapon.
In the last few years, the incidence of chemical or detergent suicide has been on the rise in the U.S., and law enforcement is often the first on the scene. Mixing deadly concoctions of household chemicals in an enclosed space such as a vehicle creates a deadly gas, causing asphyxiation of the victim and a continued threat to anyone who comes upon the scene.
Despite aggressive laws limiting the sale of over-the-counter ingredients, methamphetamine use continues to rise, and in many communities, meth labs are continuing to endanger residents and law enforcement personnel. The fumes from meth production can be fatal if not immediately detected. Because the people involved with meth labs can be dangerous, law enforcement must also carry a weapon. That means hands-free chemical detection is important.
Sadly, large events—like sports games, concerts and parades—are now potential targets for chemical attack. These events could be catastrophic, given the large population affected and a limited number of exits. Continual monitoring of the air can help law enforcement respond quickly, should an attack take place.
The threat of attack by a weapon of mass destruction has the potential to claim thousands of lives in a very short period of time. Diligent observation has proven to be an effective tool in the prevention of such terrorist attacks. In large cities, on-the-street police officers monitor the air for toxic chemicals in case of such a threat.
Special law enforcement teams, such as Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT), narcotics, bomb disposal and hostage negotiation, must be prepared for a wide variety of situations, including chemical threats. An easy-to-use, hands-free chemical detector can save lives and provide useful information in these tactical situations, without interfering with the primary mission.
It is common for natural disasters, like floods, earthquakes and tornados, to cause secondary threats, including the release of toxic chemicals into the atmosphere. Directly following the event, it is critical to monitor air quality levels to reduce the risk of harm.
Whether caused by an industrial, transportation or residential accident, hazardous material incidents can threaten an entire community. While specialized HazMat teams are often dispatched to handle these incidents, police officers are often the first on the scene. Identifying the presence of toxic chemicals is a critical first step in assessing the situation.
Keeping bystanders from the scene of an accident is often the job of law enforcement personnel. These perimeters are determined by the relative risk—including presence of toxic chemicals. Gasses and vapors can spread in many different directions, depending on changes in wind direction, so careful monitoring of the air for toxic chemicals helps law enforcement detect changes in hot and cold zones around a HazMat incident.