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29th Nov 2023

Tasers to be issued to Public Order Unit in list of new support measures for Garda

Simon Kelly

Garda

There will also be an increase in incapacitant spray and dog units.

Garda Commissioner Drew Harris has revealed that 200 tasers will be issued to the Gardaí’s public order units along with a list of further measures to support the force following last week’s riots.

Currently only available to armed and emergency response units, tasers will be issued to officers subject to training.

Speaking to the Oireachtas Committee on Justice on Wednesday, November 29, Commissioner Harris said that the Gardaí will also seek to permanently possess two water cannons, which the force currently have on loan from the PSNI.

The list of new measures comes in the wake of the riots which shook the capital city last week, resulting in three buses, three Garda patrol cars and one Luas tram being set alight, while 13 properties were attacked and substantially damaged.

Gardaí to receive tasers as part of a list of new supports following riots

Further expansions from on the list include stronger incapacitant spray to all Gardaí (which is already provided to the public order units), as well as the provision of smaller round shields to public order units for increased mobility (long and medium shields are currently provided).

The deployment of body cameras as part of “a proof of concept” project in Dublin has also been pushed forward to the first quarter of next year, as opposed to the original 2025 date. Hand held video cameras are also to be provided.

The force will also accelerate the expansion of the Garda dog unit, which was provided by the latest budget.

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