Simulator helps police train for life-or-death situations

FAIRVIEW HEIGHTS, Ill. (AP) — An Illinois police department has purchased a video game-style simulator so officers can get more training on handling life-or-death situations.

The Belleville News-Democrat reports the Fairview Heights police department purchased the same technology used by police academies across the U.S. to train officers.

The simulator is programed with 850 scenarios that appear on a large screen. Officers respond to what’s happening, whether it’s a hostage situation or an emotionally unstable person holding a cellphone.

Police Chief Nick Gailius says officers have to respond to real-life situations in a split second. He says “the body has to naturally respond, and they do that by training.”

The department paid for the $29,000 simulator using money from drug seizures. The public will get to try the simulator at a May 12 open house.