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Gold Coast Commonwealth Games 2018 Update

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Preparation continues to ramp up for the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games. The Queensland Police Service (QPS) recently released some information about how they plan on keeping all of us safe during the Games.

The Queensland Police Service has undertaken, and continues to undertake, exhaustive planning in preparation of the policing response for the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games.

The policing response will be the largest ever for an event in Queensland with the safety of the Games and the general public at the forefront of planning.

While the Games will be a welcoming international sporting event that will showcase Queensland and Queenslanders to the world, the policing and security overlay is cognizant of the current threat environment in which we live, and must plan for all contingencies.

The QPS will use a range of strategies and specialist equipment to ensure the Games are safe and enjoyable for everyone, including ‘Backscatter vans’, which are mobile x-ray devices.

The vans are not new to Australia or Queensland, and have been used by the QPS previously- in 2014 (G20) and 2016 (Gold Coast marathon).

Backscatter vans use low dose radiation (that poses no threat to the public) to scan vehicles for suspicious items that may identify a range of threats to the community.

The use of Backscatter vans is strictly regulated with the operator, the Australian Federal Police, requiring a licence to operate issued under the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Radiation Act 1998.

Assistant Commissioner Peter Crawford, Commonwealth Games Group said Backscatter vans used in Queensland Police led events are operated under our direction by AFP specially trained officers in accordance with strict protocols and licencing conditions.

“The safety of members of the public is paramount in the planning and delivery of the security operation for the Commonwealth Games.

“I am aware of some health concerns raised in the media today regarding the use of the Backscatter vans but the use of the technology under the protocols adopted by the QPS should allay any fears or anxiety for members of the public regarding its use.”

Assistant Commissioner Crawford said that unless exceptional circumstances exist Backscatter vans are not and will not be used to:

(a) scan people;
(b) scan vehicles where people are occupants;
(c) randomly scan public spaces.

“We are aware of concerns in other jurisdictions associated with the use of backscatter technology. These concerns generally arose out of using the technology in a way that will not be applicable in Queensland due to our different protocols.

“I am sure members of the public would understand that if we were to advertise how, where or when we were using a variety of policing strategies, including the use of Backscatter vans, we would be giving an advantage to anyone with a criminal intent.”

Source: QPD Media

 

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