This block I worked the charlie shift and aside from our standard activities of checking curfews, attempting to locate people with warrants for their arrest and focussing on the priorities set by the management team I had a few unique calls so I thought I’d write this block’s post a little differently.
This block began with the beginning of Movember. There are quite a few people with Delta Police that are participating and a few teams have been formed. Our platoon has even formed a team. For those that may be unfamiliar, the premise is that men shave clean on November 1st and grow a moustache in support of men’s health and specifically prostate cancer and male mental health initiatives. Every one of us has been affected by cancer in some form and as Police officers we deal with a significant number of mental health related issues. Of course we’re uniformed police officers and have to abide by dress standards. There’s a balance to be found with Movember, the more unique the moustache the more you have an opportunity to talk about it. In October I’d grown my goatee out so I could shave it in various ways to see how it’d look. Here’s some previews for fun:
Visit my official Mo-Bro profile page at http://mobro.co/jimingram to make a donation to a great cause, support our team and make your suggestion which style I should end up with for the end of November!
On one of our shifts we had a foreign freighter come into port with 2 crew members that required medical assistance. Due to the nature of the call, Police were requested to board the freighter before EHS could come aboard. We worked with EHS to assess the two patients, extricate them from the ship with one secured to a stretcher and take both to hospital. It was a challenge to get one of the patients out and down safety while having to be secured to the stretcher. There are no standard elevators or ramps, just narrow metal stairs that lead to a deck with no more than basic railings at the edge. Coming off the ship we had to contend with a 3 story decline, a ship in motion and solid ground. CBSA and Health Canada came out after we were on our way to the hospital to inspect the ship.
My partner and I were first on scene to a suspicious package in Tsawwassen. Perhaps you saw the tweets or our media release. Based on our direct observations and the information we had available to us at the scene the decision was made to evacuate surrounding homes and call the Explosives Disposal Unit (EDU). One of the most dangerous parts of the initial response to a call like this for the first members on scene is to determine the risk posed to the public and that requires that we assess the package itself. We have to balance getting close enough to get good information versus the risk to our personal safety. Our training staff remind us that we’re in the business of risk mitigation not risk avoidance. We have training, equipment and procedures to reduce or mitigate risk but we still face dangerous situations.
We setup a safe perimeter, had EHS and Fire personnel stage near by and a command post setup. When EDU arrived they setup with my partner and I and we ran the tactical portion of the investigation. It was very interesting to work with the EDU guys, they’re very knowledgable and have access to some very unique tools. We had a robot go in and assess the package and render it safe, then one of the EDU guys suited up in the blast suit and went it to assess it by hand. We determined that the safest option would be to destroy the remaining package with a counter blast. The EDU member in the blast suit setup the scene for a counter blast and ultimately the package was rendered safe by destroying it.
We don’t take events like this lightly and unfortunately had to displace some residents for longer than we initially expected once we had more information about the package. The evacuation was done for everyone’s safety, especially when you consider that we had to render a device safe and then destroy it with a counter blast.
This is obviously a very significant event, especially for the neighbours we had to displace. It’s being taken very seriously and the investigation has been turned over to our major crime section. The unfortunate part is that we can’t answer everyone’s questions about it. As with any major investigation we have to protect the evidence, the information and people’s privacy. In order to maintain those 3 key things we are very limited in the information that we can release. There’s never any desire to keep information from the public, it’s done to preserve the investigation.