The Vancouver Police released their Patrol Deployment Study this week. Parts of the report will be presented to Vancouver City Council on Tuesday, February 13th.
The complete report is 1,335 pages long and contains a lot of very interesting information and recommendations. As has been widely reported already, the report indicates that Vancouver has the highest crime rate of any city in Canada. For me, the most interesting part of the report is where the average VPD response times to 911 calls were reported….
On the Westside, between June 1, 2005 and May 31, 2006, the average VPD response time to a Priority 1 call was 11 minutes, 21 seconds. A Priority 1 call, as defined by the VPD is a call that "requires immediate Police attention. They are life threatening calls that can lead to death or grievous bodily harm." A bit scary.
Average response times to the other three priorities are much, much worse (the following numbers are all city-wide)…
Priority 2 34 minutes, 37 seconds
Priority 3 2 hours, 6 minutes
Priority 4 5 hours, 26 minutes
The following definitions are taken verbatim from the VPD report:
Priority 2 calls are urgent calls that require immediate police attention but do not involve a life threatening situation. Priority 2 calls include abandoned 9-1-1 calls, break and enters in progress, fights, frauds in progress, indecent acts in progress, mischiefs in progress and prowlers.
Priority 3 calls are routine calls. Priority 3 calls include assaults (not in progress), sexual assaults (not in progress), noise complaints, disturbing parties, hazardous situations, missing persons and sudden deaths.
Priority 4 calls are low priority non-urgent calls. Priority 4 calls include break and enters (not in progress), frauds, mischiefs and thefts.
As a result, the VPD are asking city council to approve funding for 65 additional Officers… a request that, given the comments so far by the City, seems unlikely to be granted anytime soon. (Mayor Sullivan has been quoted a few times talking about his support for re-deploying existing Officers, rather than adding new ones)
This topic will be the focus of the Bill Good Show on CKNW Monday, February 12th at 9:00am. I have been asked to be a part of the panel of guests discussing the issue and will be talking about a suggestion that I have made on the show, as well as on this blog that offers one cheap and easy way to immediately improve the efficiency of the VPD.
You can listen to the show live on the internet by clicking on the "Listen Live" icon on the top right corner of the CKNW home page, just above the weather report.