Those of us who have either worked in law enforcement or closely with public safety personnel know there are many other positions that support a first responder. Courts have bailiffs, the jails and prisons have correctional deputies/officers, all of which are sometimes the “forgotten cops” since they are not always in the public’s view. There are a host of supporting positions as well. Some of these are detectives, gang, drug, multi-jurisdictional task forces, air units and SWAT. Action Target recognizes and respects public safety personnel at all levels, whether in a highly visible position or not.
One of the segments of public safety that is vital to a first responder’s success is training. When a peace officer is on or off duty, they are usually carrying a firearm. Therefore, firearms training is paramount to their surviving a critical incident. The training program designed for most agency is specific to the threats they encounter. These programs are developed within the state Police Officer Standards and Training (POST) requirements, but are still unique to the agency. Most of the time, the coursework is established by the Rangemaster.
What is a Rangemaster? What do they do? If you are Orlando Police Departments Rangemaster, your work never ends. You are responsible for training and qualifying 750 officers with handguns, shotguns, and rifles, specialized weapons training, less lethal weapons, as well as maintenance, repair and armorer inspection of over 1800 weapons. You are responsible for all daily and long term operations of one of the largest indoor gun ranges in the country, coordinating training with local, state, federal and military organizations, and the list goes on and on. The ultimate goal with this title though, is to help prepare officers with the skills they need, to survive the challenges they face in today’s world.
Eric Clapsaddle is Action Targets “Rangemaster of the Quarter” because he does just that. The efforts made by him, and ultimate results of those efforts, have far exceeded national averages in a positive way. He has gone above and beyond, and continues to constantly re-evaluate and improve. Who benefits…..the Citizens of Orlando and the Officers who serve that community.
Why is his Training so good?
Because he prepares his officers for “REAL WORLD” situations. The National averages show that about 90% of police gun fights occur at night. Therefore, Orlando does about 90% of their training in “low light to no light” conditions. Why…..because it is what they will face.
This training includes “Multiple Adversaries” because again, in the real world, 67% of all gun fights have 2 or more bad guys.
Additionally, officers training and qualifications include live fire combined with decision making under significant stress. This helps prepare them for real life shoot/ no shoot incidents. Is that a cell phone or a gun? Remember, the time to make these decisions is about 1/4 of a second. Realistic training helps prepare them too make the right decision.
The scenario’s used are replica’s of real life situations re-created. They include moving adversaries, because the bad guys don’t just stand still. Innocent bystanders get in the way, and have to be worked into the scenario’s as well. You have to work and look for cover, and the scenario’s include these props as well.
Eric, who has an Engineering degree, designed several unique features in the equipment used at the facility that help make the training more real, and better fit the training needs of today’s officers.
The training that is done becomes very real and recreates the stress felt in a real gunfight. It thereby prepares the officers so they can deal with adrenaline dumps, tunnel vision, and hearing issues, to better defend themselves and the public they serve.
The bottom line to all of this is…..Officers return home at the end of their shift, and the Public is better protected from criminals.
The Ultimate compliment a Rangemaster can receive is when his training efforts have paid off…..and an officer knows it, saving his life or the life of a citizen. The results of Eric and his staff, will never know the unspoken “thank-you’s” for those they have saved.
At the recent Chiefs of Police convention held in Orlando, many Top Notch Trainers were able to see first hand some of the techniques and scenarios used by the Orlando Training Department on their Tactical range. Now, months later, I am still getting phone calls about how fantastic that was.
Agencies from not only the United States were blown away, but representative’s from Taiwan, Denmark, Germany, Hungary, Brazil, New Zealand, England, Spain, and the list continues, were impressed as well. They were impressed with the Facility, but more importantly, how the facility was used with real world scenario’s. This was where the rubber met the road, and this is where we have seen no finer training anywhere.
An example of the results are this…..
The National average for misses in gunfights (at a distance of about 9 yards or less) is approximately 80% based upon statistics from the FBI’s study on gunfights. For the Orlando Police Department, their hit percentage is around 86%. This is a result of the efforts of Eric and his staff. What a fantastic job! Our hats are off to him and that is why we recognize “Eric Clapsaddle” from the Orlando Police Department as Action Targets ” Rangemaster of the Quarter.”