Superior Police Start Training in Virtual Reality
The Superior Police Department has is the only department in the Northland using this virtual reality system.
FOX 21 got a look at the new training system from SURVIVR, a company out of Texas that builds "immersive virtual reality first responder training." Superior police officers are now able to run realistic simulations in a virtual world year-round.
The new $80,000 system allows officers to train in a virtual world with realistic graphics and an ever-changing set of circumstances that allows them to learn de-escalation techniques, advanced decision making, use of force, and officer safety.
This system allows for multiple users and the use of realistic weapons, and it most importantly, it's designed so officers and trainers can review the completed training simulation from multiples angles and learn from their successes or failures all in a controlled, safe environment.
Superior Patrol Captain Paul Winterscheidt told FOX 21, “We can customize our avatars, our avatars can be resistive to officers, they can be verbally defiant to officers...It really requires officers to think through those communication skills to resolve a situation in the best way possible."
The virtual reality trainer is also used by the military and private security firms, the system allows for several scenarios including traffic stops, burglary, loitering, emotionally disturbed individuals, active shooter, and many more.
The company started in 2016 with a focus on gaming, education, and healthcare, but after a chance meeting with a retired police officer, they realized the potential of the product to help in police training, so the company pivoted in 2018 to what they are today.