Hybrid and electric vehicles in law enforcement
Mangum, Roger Anthony Sr
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Law enforcement agencies across the country are continually faced with rising fuel costs, budget constraints, and environmental concerns. Confronted with these issues, agencies are tasked with providing effective and efficient services to the communities they serve and protect. Law enforcement agencies rely on mobile response. Officers depend on some type of motor vehicle to respond to calls for service in the vast majority of cases. Law enforcement agencies can deliver timely service to their communities and still work within budget constraints, conserve fuel, and set a positive environmental example to the public by incorporating hybrid and electric vehicles into their fleets. Hybrid and electric vehicle consume less fuel and get better gas mileage, which means less gasoline purchased. The amount of fuel consumption also means they operate in an environmentally friendly mode. Law enforcement agencies that utilize these vehicles will also demonstrate to the public they serve their willingness to be proactive when confronting environmental and economic issues. Despite valid concerns such as initial purchase costs, maintenance issues, performance issues, and officer and equipment compatibility, law enforcement agencies can incorporate hybrid and electric vehicles within part, if not all, of their law enforcement duties. Agencies will need to determine what type of vehicle will blend with various divisions or units within the agency to allow hybrid and electric vehicles to fulfill specific mission objectives and make these vehicles a win- win situation for agencies, governing entities, and the public.