Virtual reality technology continues to make major inroads in different sectors as of right now. The Welsh police force is now using VR to effectively train its officers in a virtual environment. In doing so, they have become the first police unit across the United Kingdom to do so. Whether or not other agencies will follow this example, remains to be seen.
Welsh Police Embraces VR Training
Although the public’s opinion on virtual reality is still all over the place, it has become evident there is a lot of merit to this technology as well. Especially when it comes to specific training purposes, there are plenty of options to explore. The Welsh police have now officially embraced this technology as a way to train its officers moving forward. An interesting decision that also sets a precedent in the UK moving forward.
For the time being, it seems this technology allows the police to train officers to deal with situations they may encounter on the streets. Additionally, they can test officers’ responses to specific scenarios, which will also provide valuable insights for the future. It is not the same as real-life experience, but it is better than nothing at all.
Welsh Police Superintendent Vicki Townsend comments:
“[Virtual reality] provides the ability of a safe learning environment, which promotes open conversations about opportunities for options for action, investigation and safeguarding. Often within policing, there is no right or wrong answer to how a situation is managed. It’s about understanding what you would do, the power and legislation you utilize to take that action, and why you have done it. The scenarios provide the opportunity as a group to maximize this learning by focusing on the decision-making model, and allows the development of officers from peers with more or different experiences.”
It is not the first time we see more and more organizations use VR for training purposes. More specifically, sports franchises are working with this technology, as are a few other big companies all over the world. With the Welsh police now joining this list, things will get very interesting moving forward. This new VR training is part of the force training days to frontline officers as of right now. With forty officers providing input every week, this venture can be streamlined over the coming months. A total of ten scenarios will be explored, indicating this is a rather extensive business venture altogether.
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