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How departments can adapt their police fleets despite current vehicle shortages

Many agencies have resorted to the cannibalization of other vehicles in order to keep their vehicles on patrol


Content provided by TruckVault

By Julia Hanna

Vehicle shortages and long lead times have plagued the law enforcement sector since 2020. Forecasted trends indicate that the shortage will continue into 2024 despite current improvements. Fleet directors nationwide have found themselves in a balancing act of maintaining current vehicles while waiting for new vehicles to arrive.

Forecasted trends indicate that the shortage will continue into 2024 despite current improvements.
Forecasted trends indicate that the shortage will continue into 2024 despite current improvements. (Photo/TruckVault)

While vehicle manufacturing is projected to rise slightly, law enforcement vehicles rely heavily on different microchips and interior features compared to mass-market models.

According to one source, a vehicle takes approximately 18-35 hours to manufacture once it’s on the production line. Considering this, semi-conductor shortages and union strikes, departments are driven to maintain the workability of each vehicle. Many have resorted to the cannibalization of other vehicles in order to keep their vehicles on patrol. Departments also use custom storage and asset management approaches, which keep each vehicle as multi-purpose as possible.

TruckVault stands at the forefront of custom storage for patrol and rapid response vehicles. Units installed in department vehicles are designed to decrease response time, equip personnel with necessary tools on site, and reduce wear and tear on gear.

Ultimately, TruckVault drawers are built to protect officers, gear and the public. Recently, one of the locks on a TruckVault system was damaged during a break-in attempt in South Dakota. Despite this, the drawer remained inaccessible thanks to patented Strike Guard technology by TruckVault. The contents in the drawer remained safe and out of criminal hands.

Instances like this $21,800 theft from a New Mexico patrol car in November 2022 are damaging to officer careers and department budgets. Secure storage solutions like TruckVault drawer systems and command centers implement Strike Guard technology, combination locks, and wall-to-wall design all meant to deter tampering and prevent loss of gear.

Additionally, TruckVault systems have proven capable of handling intense heat. While they don’t boast a fireproof rating, a recent burn test conducted by TruckVault proved quite successful. Gear stored inside a TruckVault drawer – including a MacBook Pro – was still operational after the vehicle fire was extinguished.

TruckVault secure storage systems are the solution departments nationwide have turned to when adapting their fleets to best serve their communities. From the Drone Responder Line to a simple drawer to an entirely custom system, each TruckVault unit aims to solve problems faced by the officers and agents that keep us safe. To learn more about what TruckVault can do for your department, consult a design pro. The TruckVault team’s knowledge and experience are here to guide you.

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