Working Together: Wilmington PD’s Dynamic Duo
CUSTOMER SPOTLIGHT: Wilmington (North Carolina) Police Department
Written in collaboration with Assistant Chief Donny Williams of the Wilmington (NC) Police Department
Photos courtesy of the Wilmington Police Department
The city of Wilmington is located on the east side of North Carolina and is home to beautiful beaches, one of the nation’s largest Historic Districts, excellent food and more. This coastal city boasts 120,000 residents and growing. In addition, the Wilmington area sees a fair amount of tourism, nearing $580 million from visitor spending.1
More citizens moving into the area and steady tourism means a dedicated commitment from the Wilmington Police Department for a safer community.
The Department elected to replace an aging 1999 Mobile Command Vehicle with two more specialized vehicles to provide better capabilities for its officers and staff.
“We replaced a 1999 Mobile Command Center with an LDV-built Freightliner M2 Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) vehicle in 2012 and a 40-foot Freightliner M2 Mobile Command Center on 2018. We selected LDV to build these vehicles because of their reputation and quality of work,” said Assistant Chief Donny Williams of the Wilmington Police Department.
“By segregating their needs into two more specialized vehicles, the Department can respond to incidents and situations with the right vehicle,” said Special Service Vehicle Sales Specialist, Rick Zinnen. With two new custom vehicles on hand, the Department will be better equipped for incidents within their community.
Room for Robots
The Wilmington PD was looking to improve their bomb-related call response and chose to design and build a vehicle dedicated to those operations. Their 29-foot overall length EOD vehicle features a Freightliner M2 chassis, all aluminum body construction, interior workstations, roll-up access door with a robot ramp and more.
“We can send our Bomb/EOD Vehicle out on bomb-related calls and it is equipped with everything it needs to be successful on those missions.”
Dedicated Mobile Command Vehicle
In addition to their EOD vehicle, LDV built a new Mobile Command Center for the Department. This new vehicle features four of LDV’s industry-exclusive flat-floor slide-outs to increase the interior workspace for their officers. Wilmington also has the ability to take their operations outside thanks to an exterior workstation and generous awning.
“This vehicle has been utilized during hurricane response efforts, community events and many training exercises,” said Williams. “It has been a great improvement to our on-scene incident command operations.”
“One of the must-haves we wanted when designing these vehicles is the ability to connect the two vehicles together and share the bomb robot video and audio on a closed circuit with the Command Vehicle,” Williams said.
Assistant Chief Williams is referring to the tethering capabilities of their two vehicles. This capability allows those inside the Mobile Command Center to “see” what the Bomb Squad “sees.” This is extremely important during situations where decisions need to be made from the scene. Department staff can meet inside the conference area within the Mobile Command Center while watching the video feed from the robot or other sources and make decisions as needed.
READY TO WORK
Both of their LDV-built custom law enforcement vehicles have been involved in numerous training operations and scenarios with their staff as well.
Wilmington, North Carolina and its proximity to the coast has hurricanes and tropical storm conditions as well. Having these vehicles in their fleet has proven to be vital. Shortly after taking delivery of their Mobile Command Center in 2018, the area was hit by Hurricane Florence. The Wilmington Police Department utilized the vehicle to help with disaster relief for the community.
To learn more about Wilmington PD’s Bomb/EOD truck, CLICK HERE.
To learn more about Wilmington PD’s Mobile Command Center, CLICK HERE.