Civilians clearing traffic? Atlanta police chief to deploy ‘HERO’ traffic unit to free up officers
The Highway Emergency Response Operators unit would consist of civilians that are trained to clear traffic resulting from stalls and other delays
By Sarah Roebuck
ATLANTA — An idea for a new program deployed in Atlanta aims to have civilians help with simple traffic incidents to free up officers so they can go back to fighting crime, Police Chief Darin Schierbaum told FOX5.
The “HERO” traffic unit, which stands for Highway Emergency Response Operators, would consist of civilians that are trained to clear traffic resulting from stalls and other delays, Schierbaum said.
The chief told city council members that slots for the unit have been added to the new budget.
“We can free up police officers to go back to do what they need to do: crime-fighting,” Schierbaum said.
Atlanta is currently 450 officers short of being fully staffed, Schierbaum said. The service will start as a pilot project.