New York police recall body cameras after explosion
The New York Police Department has suspended the use of almost 3,000 body cameras after one of them exploded last weekend.
In a statement, the police department said a Vievu model LE-5 body-worn camera worn by an officer exploded during a late-night tour on Sunday evening.
According to the police, the officer noticed smoke rising from the bottom part of the camera and immediately took it off.
“After it was safely removed, the device exploded,” the statement adds.
“There were no injuries sustained. The incident revealed a potential for the battery inside the camera to ignite. The cause and scope of the defect are currently being investigated.”
Following the incident, all officers wearing the LE-5 body cameras were ordered to remove them and return them to their stations.
Emergency services on both sides of the Atlantic have been deploying body cameras in increasing numbers to ensure the safety of officers and to help them record incidents.
In the last few months, SHP Online has reported that police officers in Humber, NHS paramedics, parking wardens in Yorkshire and recycling workers in Oxfordshire have all been issued with body cameras to help ensure their safety.
And last month, Torbay Council launched a public consultation on whether its staff should have body-worn cameras
“Out of an abundance of caution, the Police Commissioner has directed that the continued use and distribution of the LE-5 model cameras be suspended effective immediately,” the statement adds.
“The Department is in the process of collecting and removing the LE-5 cameras from the commands now.
“This issue does not pertain to or in any way affect members equipped with Vievu model LE-4 body-worn cameras, and members of the service equipped with LE-4 cameras will continue to use them as required by the Patrol Guide,” the statement from the New York Police Department adds.
A spokesperson for Vievu’s parent company, Axon, told CNN that the manufacturer was “working closely with the NYPD to investigate this issue”.
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