Law Enforcement Technology

JUN 2019

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Page 38 of 55 JUNE/JULY 2019 LAW ENFORCEMENT TECHNOLOGY 39 vogue. It is quite common now for a flashlight to have an operational button that will move the light through high to low power to strobing, occasionally changing the order dependent on per- ceived market need. A strobe function can be a powerful tool with two caveats. First, the strobe must be the proper frequency and second, the operator has to be trained in the use of it. With improper use, a strobe light can have as much of an effect on the user as it does on the target. Obviously, weight is always a con- cern when we're adding something to our gun belt and when we look at the need for two flashlights the concern for weight doubles. A good tactical handheld light in today's world should only weigh a few ounces, less than a half pound for sure. Whether it's a thin- walled aluminum-bodied light or one of polymer construction, having the weight below four ounces isn't usually a big challenge given the size limits. Given the desirability of a recharge- able power system, the docking system comes into question. Since it is far more convenient not to remove the bat- teries to recharge them, it's more desir- able if the flashligth can be recharged without having to do so. If the light isn't rechargeable then extra batteries must be available for an officer during any given shift. Lithium is fantastic for hav- ing a long shelf life but can be hard to find, and when you do find them, they can be expensive. Modern LED tech- nology empowers the use of common AA batteries, but they won't last as long as their lithium cousins. The integration of Bluetooth has started making controlling your light even stronger. Some programmable lights require you to read the manual and figure out the proper sequence of button pushing to program your light for initial power, high/low limits and more through an app with your smart- phone. These apps not only let you control programming for your light but allow you to check battery levels as well. A cost that can't be measured All this output, power and convenience comes with a price. If you're going to experience any low or no light situa- tions in the course of your duties, and if there's a chance that any lethal force encounter you have will be in such an environment, are you willing to invest the cost as a potential life insurance policy? Request information at A tactical handheld flashlight should measure no more than eight inches.

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