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Field Support Bureau

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Two officers prone at a firing range.

York Regional Police Field Support is broken into several units falling under Emergency Response and Operational Support, including:

Air Support Unit

Members of the Air Support Unit can be found more than 500 feet above the heads of York Region residents in the police helicopter, named AIR 2. The unit includes civilian pilots and tactical flight officers trained in patrol and suspect tactics, airborne surveillance and advanced thermal imaging. The unit supports frontline officers with criminal apprehensions, vehicle pursuits, searches for missing persons, traffic enforcement and through use of thermal imaging, identify indoor marihuana grow operations.

About AIR 2

A helicopter flies over a highway

AIR 2, one of only six police helicopters in service in Canada today, is a light single-engine Eurocopter EC120B. It has a maximum cruising speed of 200 kilometers per hour and a range of 635 kilometers. AIR 2 utilizes a Fenestron tail rotor design, making it one of the quietest helicopters in operation today.

Wondering if the Air Support Unit can see through the walls of your house with infrared technology?

Don't fear, infrared technology is non-intrusive and only detects difference in heat on the nearest surface to the camera. For example, if a person was walking across a field, the person would be displayed as hot, as they are emitting greater amounts of heat than the field he or she is walking on. Further, glass is a reflective surface to infrared technology. Windows appear as a grey shade to the camera operator.

Rest assured, someone walking on the sidewalk outside your home can see inside better than officers in the helicopter possibly could.

Canine Unit

An officer kneels next to a large dogThe Canine Unit comprises 15 teams consisting of an officer and a Police Service Dog (PSD). Canine Unit members support frontline officers and investigative units by:

  • Tracking suspects that have fled on foot
  • Searching for missing persons
  • Searching for evidence
  • Apprehending criminals
  • Performing high-risk vehicle stops or arrests

Canine Unit members also provide support in the handling and detection of narcotics, cadavers, explosives, firearms and ammunition.

Emergency Response Unit

A group of officers wearing grey equipment readies their gunsMembers of the Emergency Response Unit deal with situations beyond the safe operating limits of frontline officers, including the apprehension of armed or barricaded persons, hostage rescues, crisis intervention and bomb disposal.

Public Safety Unit

The Public Safety Unit is responsible for the deployment of specialized personnel and resources.

The Public Safety Unit is comprised of five key support functions:

  • Emergency ManagementA male officer watches a crowd of people lined up on the side of a road
  • Demonstrations/Protests/Labour Disputes
  • Search and Rescue
  • Crowd Management Unit
  • Special Events Planning

Learn more about the Public Safety Unit here.