We are today publishing the first in a new series of videos called #OpExplain.
These videos explain different elements of policing that we often get asked about.
We already have a few ideas, however YOU now have the chance to ask questions that will influence what videos we make in the future. You can ask us anything – we will look at the themes of what is being asked and make a video about the most popular questions.
It doesn’t have to be a complicated question; maybe you want to know why police car sirens make different sounds, or how heavy body armour is. Maybe you want to see inside a cell or see what is on the “menu” in the custody suite?
Please let us know and maybe you will see a video about it in the future.
In today's video. operational trainer Tom Hig demonstrates how we use PAVA spray.
Hi, I'm Tom Hig and I'm one of the operational trainers here at Lincolnshire Police. I'm responsible for officer safety training alongside numerous other things.
What is PAVA?
Today what I'm going to talk to you about is PAVA - PAVA is an inhibitant spray the police have got available to them as a tactical option.
What PAVA is, it stands for Pelargonic Acid Vanillylamide (don't worry, you don't need to know that!). As I said, it's an irritant and when it comes into contact with the subject especially into their eyes the best way I can describe it is it's like wet fire.
So that's what PAVA is, it's a synthetic made pepper spray. However, it has replaced the old pepper spray so unlike the old CS gas where everyone got 'the good news' and it would potentially fill a building this comes out in a jet so you can target a specific subject.
When it comes to using it on the subjects it's a tactical option for police to use for whatever reason they may not use their baton or they may not be able to get hands on because of the threat level, so for instance if a subject were to have a bat in their hand I strongly wouldn't advise any police officer to go and try and get hands on if someone is acting aggressively with a bat in their hand.
The good thing about PAVA is you can use it from a distance of up to 15 feet so again it saves you having to get hands-on and it protects officers from any injuries that would arise from getting hit with a bat as you could imagine it wouldn't be very good.
I'm just going to quickly example how to use PAVA and how it can be good and effective. An officer will draw the PAVA and take aim, adopting a good strong, stable firing stance and the target area that we're looking for is around the eyes. I'm going to fire it in short, sharp bursts starting at the centre of mass, working our way up to the target area which is the eyes - SPRAY!!
Hopefully that will have the desired effect and the potential bat could have got put down. The subject's going to be concentrating in protecting their eyes because they're going to suffer extreme amounts of discomfort.
It can be described as "wet fire" as the effect it has when it comes into contact with the eyes is like wet fire so imagine that how you can and now it's safe for the officer to approach because the distraction has been taken away, from the bat in their hand, to the hands to protect their face.