Police improve weapon training

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 23 September, 1995, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 23 September, 1995, 12:00am

POLICE shootings and upgrading of weapons have led to changes in firearms training over the last few years.

Officers shot dead five people last year and a street sleeper's death on Thursday brings this year's toll to four.

When mainland gangs went on the rampage in the territory several years ago, police decided to increase the power of their sidearms.

Police say weapons training standards are now among the highest in the world.

Recruits spend at least 60 hours and 600 rounds of ammunition in training.

All officers must attend three training sessions each year and are required to pass an annual weapons test.

Officers who fail the exam are not allowed to draw a weapon on duty.

The police Smith and Wesson series 10 was upgraded in 1993 to fire a faster hollow point bullet.

The new round is designed to 'mushroom' on impact, causing serious tissue damage and making it less likely to pass all the way through a human body.

It is also more likely to make someone stop in their tracks than the old plain lead-nosed bullet.