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Balancing Realism to Safety: Realistic Firearms Training Raises Danger Yet Remains a Pivotal Role

NCJ Number
Law Enforcement Technology Volume: 35 Issue: 8 Dated: August 2008 Pages: 52,54,56-58,59
Jonathan Kozlowski
Date Published
August 2008
6 pages
This article examines the use of realism in firearms training and balancing realism with officer safety.
Realism in firearms training plays a vital role in law enforcement training. Having trainees understand lessons before the test can closely acclimate to a gunfight without compromising safety, thus enhancing training’s effectiveness and affecting the officer’s reality on the street. A number of organizations offer firearms training to law enforcement nationwide, including, the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center (FLETC), ArmorGroup International Training Inc, and Spartan Tactical Training Group, as well as the National Rifle Association (NRA). Training instructors believe that stress inoculation prepares officers for the chaotic situations they may face, putting officers into those situations in a safe training environment through scenarios and force-on-force training. Having dealt with the problem repeatedly in their training, they are more likely to respond in that manner. While accidents can occur while using realism in firearm training, safety measures are in place to protect the individual trainee, as well as other students and instructors. Prevention is considered the first defense against training accidents.