SAN DIEGO — The San Diego Harbor Police Department showcased its new tactical trainer, a regional resource to assist San Diego County law enforcement agencies in preparing for maritime fire and public safety scenarios on Monday, Dec. 1.
The Harbor Police Department invited officials and media for a special demonstration of the tactical trainer’s capabilities. Speakers at the event included Chairman Bob Nelson; U.S. Coast Guard Capt. Jonathan S. Spaner, commander of Sector San Diego and San Diego Capt. of the port; Port of San Diego Acting CEO John Bolduc; Harbor Police Department Acting Chief of Police Mark Stainbrook; and, Harbor Police Sgt. Todd Rakos.
“Our Harbor Police officers put their lives on the line every day to keep San Diego Bay safe, and that’s why they need the best training possible,” said Stainbrook. “This tactical trainer simulates the conditions onboard a ship or boat and allows our officers to actually fight a fire in a controlled environment, giving them a realistic experience that translates into effectiveness when the worst happens.”
During two demonstrations, teams of Harbor Police Officers arrived in boats to practice fire fighting and hostage scenarios on board the trainer.
“The Harbor Police Department’s tactical trainer is a valuable resource for our collaborative efforts to ensure maritime safety, security, and environmental stewardship in San Diego,” said Spaner. “San Diego is a strategic port which supports the United States military as well as significant economic activities involving cargo and tourism. Marine firefighting and other tactical capabilities are essential to the preparedness and resilience of our port.”
The $390,000 new training vessel, which is located on a barge off the National City Marine Terminal, stimulates a shipboard environment. The tri-level vessel is equipped with two remotely controlled burn chambers outfitted with a propane-based live fire system and enables realistic training scenarios in which firefighters board the vessel and climb down to the engine compartment to fight fires.
The majority of the tactical trainer is funded by a federal Port Security Grant.