riot squad

Public Order and Riot Squad

The Public Order and Riot Squad (PORS) is the full-time 'riot squad' of the New South Wales Police Force. PORS is within the command of Field Operations under the Major Events and Incidents Group (MEIG) which is responsible for planning for major events such as Operation Vikings, APEC, the World Youth Day and New Years Eve celebrations


The New South Wales Police Force Public Order and Riot Squad (PORS) is a full-time riot squad created in September 2005 becoming operational in January 2006 within the Counter Terrorist Co-ordination Command. PORS was created as a result of Parliamentary reports into the response and handling of riots in Redfern (February 2004) and Macquarie Fields (February 2005) where command and control and resources were criticized and found to be lacking/uncoordinated PORS is essentially the re-creation of the defunct Tactical Response Group of the 1980s except for some differences in charter and organisation


PORS are issued with a wide variety of specialised crowd control and riot equipment including Taser weapons and fully equipped high visibility riot vans and black 4WDs to allow rapid deployment across the State at a moments notice. The vans allow a team in full tactical/riot gear to deploy on the move and access equipment as needed quickly, without need to return to a station to access gear as the part time Operational Support Group (OSG) officers do. PORS also have a $700,000 water cannon truck which is fitted with an airtight cabin to protect police from smoke, gas and other irritants. It also has shatterproof "anti-bandit glass" reinforced with wire mesh, and a heavy push bar allowing it to clear barricades and other obstacles. The high pressure 12,000 litre water cannon is able to shoot a stream of water more than 50 metres


The Public Order and Riot Squad, currently commanded by Chief Superintendent Steve Cullen, specialise in:

  • crowd control;
  • bomb search;
  • response to major chemical biological and radiological (CBR) incidents;
  • performing disaster victim identification duties and manpower support; and
  • assisting general duties Police whenever a rapid co-ordinated response is needed at incidents such as brawls or street parties

PORS role also includes attending major public protests and demonstrations, assisting with searches for evidence, people, property and drugs and canvassing witnesses during large-scale investigations. The unit also clears cells, transfers inmates and performs other security duties during industrial disputes at the State's prisons.

PORS also provide core officers for Operation Vikings. Operation Vikings was designed to provide a highly visible police presence across New South Wales . Large numbers of Police are deployed to these operations, targeting targeting antisocial behaviour, alcohol related crime, street level drug possession and traffic offences in known trouble (or "hot") spots.

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