Technology & Operational Safety – Pros & Cons for Officers

Title: Technology & Operational Safety – Pros & Cons for Officers

Mr Richard Kay, Founder & Principal Trainer, Modern Combatives International


Modern technology  provides  many options  for public safety agencies  to increase  operational efficiency. One  example  is  the  officer-­‐mounted camera, a  compact portable  device  that  is  carried  by  officers  and mounted either on the side of the head or on the front of the torso and captures video and audio records of operational situations. However, whilst useful in an operational context to record officer/suspect actions, aid officers recall events post-­‐incident, and assist reviewers determine accountability against procedures, this  technology  may  create  serious  repercussions  in  post-­‐incident  investigations.  If  the  differences between human and camera perception are  not understood,  the  video involved could end up confusing and misleading officers, reviewers, and the  public. Officer-­‐mounted cameras  also pose  specific issues for officer safety -­‐ the  addition of extra gear (weight), understanding its  operation and capability (training), posing  an  injury  risk  to  officers  (hazard),  altering  suspect  interaction  (risk),  and  effecting  operational decisions  based on the  camera  (tactics). There’s also the  matter of data  security  from incident  to post-­analysis. Data quality and reliability is  a key factor, with the data integrity being a crucial aspect for legal process  after  the  fact,  as  well  as  reviewers  understanding  how  to  interpret  the  data  correctly  and  in context of the original situation.


Richard Kay is the founder of Modern Combatives®, a provider of operational safety strategies to the public safety community, and director of Dynamic Training®, an accredited provider of Vocational Education & Training.  He  has  studied  martial  and  combative  systems  since  1984  and  is  an  internationally  certified tactical force  instructor trainer.  He  has  studied  Systema  (Russian Special  Forces), Cloquba  Hajutsu  (US Police  Combatives),  Krav  Maga  (Israeli  Defence  Forces)  and  SAFTA  (US  Special Operations),  and  is  a certified Simunition Safety Supervisor, Force-­‐on-­‐Force Simulation Safety Instructor, Systema Instructor, 5th dan Karate black belt and 3rd degree Cloquba Hajutsu black belt.

Rich has  extensive experience in private security operations and spent time  in the  Australian military. In 2001 he attained the prestigious ASP Trainer Certification for law enforcement use of force training, and in 2011 was elected to the ASP Board of Examiners. He travels oversees regularly to further his research and development  and  has  instructed  in  America,  Belgium,  Portugal  and  Hong  Kong.  He  has  designed aggression management programs  for health and community  services,  and  personal safety  courses  for civilians. He has consulted to organisations  regarding personal safety for staff in high risk situations, and has  provided  expert  opinion  for  investigations  and  legal  cases  involving  operational use  of force  and training. He is a member of The International Law Enforcement Educators & Trainers Association. Rich can be contacted at or via