Officials: Ohio PD's new SWAT robot will save lives
The robot features a specially-outfitted arm capable of opening doors and moving objects, plus it can climb stairs and roll over obstacles
By Jessica Heffner
DAYTON — The Dayton police SWAT team recently purchased a robot that officials say will increase officers’ safety.
Dayton city commissioners approved the purchase of the new robot at a November meeting. The Avatar III tactical robot designed by California-based Robotex Inc. costs nearly $60,000 and is scheduled to be delivered later this month. A third-generation machine, the robot features a specially-outfitted arm capable of opening doors and moving objects.
A sophisticated track system allows it to climb stairs and roll over obstacles. It’ll also be equipped with a two-way communication system, allowing officers to speak to suspects holed up inside a building at a safe distance, said Lt. Joe Weisman, commander of the Dayton SWAT team.
“Before the robot, maybe we’d send in a K-9 and obviously a K-9 cannot open doors,” Weisman said. “This is just another progression in technology that’s making it easier and safer for everyone.”