British police officers in rural areas fear terrorist attacks
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Rural police officers across the U.K. fear they would be “sitting ducks” if a terrorist attack was launched in a rural location.
A Police Federation chairman claims police officers fear terrorist gun attacks in rural areas, saying that officers could be left “unarmed and vulnerable” in isolated areas in the U.K.
John Apter, head of the Hampshire police branch confessed that the number of police officers in England and Wales fell to its lowest figure since 1987 last year. And although he didn’t reveal the exact figure, this issue is expected to be addressed by Home Secretary Theresa May at the Police Federation conference later.
The Police Federation’s annual conference is held in Bournemouth, and during the conference, the attendees held a minute’s silence to remember the victims of the Hillsborough tragedy, which claimed the lives of 96 people.
In his interview with the BBC, Apter said that police officers could be over 70 miles away if a terrorist attack was carried out in a rural area.
Energy and power plants are one of the most probable targets of terrorist, and they are usually situated in rural and coastal areas, which means it would be difficult for police officers to protect those plants.
“Being realistic, if a firearms unit was coming from the middle of the county you are still talking about 30 miles away - you are not talking about a few minutes,” Apter said. “There would be an understandable delay.”
In other news, around 12,000 people are urged to leave Canada’s oil sands camps. The news come as a wildfire heads towards the town of Fort McMurray in Canada.
On Monday, the town’s officials issued evacuation orders to more than 8,000 people, according to a regional official. Meanwhile, 4,000 other people have been urged to leave the town.
The news come nearly two weeks after more than 80,000 people fled the Canadian town. It’s still dangerous to be living in Fort McMurray because of air quality. In fact, the town’s most dangerous level of air quality is 10, while the fire far exceeded that figure, making it 38.
Even though the resurgent fire moved away from the town, in recent days officials warn of its possible comeback in the area. Officials add that the wildfire is travelling at 30-40 meters per minute north of Fort McMurray.
And while there is nothing that can be done about wildfire, as there is no possible way of stopping it once it has been started, U.K. Police Federation can still make a huge difference in its rural policy. One of the measures could be vetting more armed officers enough to cover rural and coastal areas. Sounds like it will require lots of money from the U.K. budget, but the nation’s safety has a price.
Images: DARREN STAPLES/REUTERS, PA Wire, Olivia Harris / Reuters, RAYMOND DAUVIN/REUTERS, Cole Burston/Getty Images | MYC Writer: Polina TikhonovaSubscribe to UpdatesRelated Articles