ESTEVAN - Current and prospective members of the joint tactical unit for the Estevan Police Service (EPS) and the Weyburn Police Service (WPS) gathered in Estevan on Wednesday for a full day of training.
Using the former St. John's School site on Second Street, they tackled indoor and outdoor scenarios they might face. Signs were set up on the street to indicate why there were a couple of police vehicles present.
"Our tactical team for Estevan and Weyburn is a shared team," said EPS Det. Trevor Roberts, who is the team lead. "What we were doing today was running through potential candidates who are interested in joining the team, so they were scored or assessed in certain areas of their abilities to just join and deploy with the team."
The tactical team has 12 members between the two cities, and members are typically split between the EPS and WPS. Constables, corporals and sergeants are involved.
The EPS has had a tactical unit, known as the Containment Warrant Entry Team, since 2015, and the joint effort for Estevan and Weyburn was formed at the start of 2020. They've been called out about 10 times each year, including calls for assistance in rural communities.
Wednesday's training included the different scenarios they might encounter when dispatched to a call, including traffic stops, building entry and clearing a room, as well as firearms usage.
The prospective members were tested on fitness, firearms and how they handled the situations. Then team members checked how many candidates could be selected for vacancies that might come up for 2022. Roberts said there could be up to four vacancies.
"It's a pretty exhaustive day, because it's a 12-hour session for these applicants to get all the testing in," said Roberts.
There were some very strong candidates from both cities to fill vacancies, and Roberts said those who won't be successful will still be rated very well as far as tactics and abilities.
Officers need to have at least three years of experience before joining the team.
Roberts said they didn't have any complaints about the training, or any onlookers dropping by to see what was happening.