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article imagePolish police trainees push vehicles in 'chase' video

By Lynn Curwin     Dec 10, 2010 in Crime
Katowice - Students at a police school in Poland were filmed pushing vehicles around a course to save petrol during a simulated car chase, resulting in criticism for cost-cutting measures
The footage, from the Katowice police school, shows a white Fiat Panda being pushed and a police van being pushed behind it in a “chase.” A second police van is then pushed into place to intercept the “criminals” in the car.
"As we can see, cost cutting in the police has now reached absurd levels," The Telegraph quoted Jozef Kogut, a former senior police commander and now head of a victims support association, as saying.
"After classes like this the officers won't be much good at catching fleeing bandits. Everything will be too fast for them."
Roman Wierzbicki, head of the Katowice branch of the police trade union, said that the government talks about reforming police, but funds are not being provided for training or equipping officers.
Gazeta Katowice reported that the footage was shot in mid November from the window of a classroom.
Inspector Dorota Matys, a spokesman for the school, said that the exercises were designed to teach students how to remove suspects from cars and put them in police vehicles so there was no need to start the engines – which would also result in high insurance costs. She told Gazeta Katowice that other training takes place at the school near Warsaw Legionowo or on the range in Gliwice.
Marek Wojcik , MP for the area, said the film evokes laughter through tears, and that he will try to arrange a meeting with those responsible for the situation.
The Telegraph reported that staff at the centre also used their own money to purchase text books, and that Inspector Jacek Kosmaty, a lecturer from the centre who leaked the video, said he made it public to draw attention to the “absurd savings” being enforced.
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