It’s accurate up to 300 metres and its impact can be deadly.
Const. Richard MacLeod has been trained to use carbine rifles for a decade.
The almost five-year veteran of Summerside police recently spent a week teaching his fellow officers all about the rifle and its proper use.
“We do a whole morning of classes, going over the weapon itself, characteristics of it,” said MacLeod, who went through specialized training at the Atlantic Police Academy in order to instruct his fellow officers.
“For a lot of the members, this is a brand new weapon.”
Each officer with the Summerside Police Service spent two days, first in the classroom and then on the shooting range at Slemon Park, becoming familiarized with the weapon.
The training was intensive and precautionary instead of reactionary.
“As people get more comfortable, there are more dynamic drills with more movement and, by the end of the today (day two of training), we were moving as teams, running up and responding to a possible active shooter.”
It’s a scenario MacLeod hopes he will never see come to life while on duty.
But, he added, being trained and prepared is vital to the job.
“You can deal with a situation from a far greater distance than just with your pistol,” explained MacLeod, of the advantage of the carbine. “With your pistol, obviously, you have to be a lot closer to whatever it is you are drawn on.”
Three members of the Summerside police were called to Moncton on the fateful day in June 2014, trained to jump into action at a moment’s notice.
“When these unfortunate events happen we all learn from them and develop best practices moving forward,” said Cpl. Jason Blacquiere.
MacLeod added, “Every situation we go into we don’t want to use our sidearm or carbine. We want to be able to calm that situation and end it peacefully. These just offer a lot more peace of mind.”