Today, the TSG has three main tasks in the policing of the Metropolis:
Potential TSG candidates are selected from mainstream divisional officers, Officers are selected on merit and much emphasis is placed upon their personal policing ability, motivation, resilience and good communication skills. A high degree of fitness is also required, applicants must be recommended by a senior officer (minimum rank of Inspector) whilst on division.
Mercedes Sprinters are the standard vehicle of TSG and each van transports six Constables and a Sergeant, this being an operational Serial ready to respond to incidents. Within each operational base the unit is made up of an Inspector, three Sergeants and eighteen Constables.
TSG officers are not routinely armed, but are equipped with Speedcuffs, Monadnock fixed batons and CS Incapacitant Spray like divisional officers. TSG does, however, have its own firearms capability with officers from '1 Area' being trained as Authorised Firearms Officers (AFOs) on standard issue firearms such as the Glock 17 and Heckler & Koch MP5, as well as less-lethal weaponry such as the Baton Gun and Taser. Officers from '1 Area' conduct certain infrequent armed patrols within London, usually supplementing Specialist Firearms Command. In most cases, instead of TSG officers wearing standard black trousers and white shirt, when TSG police demonstrations they often wear fire-retardent overalls with their stab vests over it.
TSG is also authorised to deploy Tasers. This has been operational for some time among Trojan teams and is now authorised for use within TSG units. Taser is traditionally used to incapacitate a suspect where the use of baton or incapacitant spray has proved ineffective, and the use of a firearm is inappropriate. Taser is intended to be a less-lethal option for police where a suspect proves particularly violent and/or resistant to conventional means of arrest.
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