CBC : Vancouver police get sonic crowd control device
Vancouver police have a new crowd control device capable of emitting painfully loud blasts of sound, just in time for the 2010 Winter Olympics, CBC News has learned.
The medium-range acoustic device (MRAD) can use sound as a weapon, emitting piercing sounds at frequency levels that cross the human threshold of pain and are potentially damaging to hearing, say audio experts.
But it is primarily designed as a communications device that's clearly audible up to a kilometre away, say police.
Province : Vancouver police deny sonic gun bought for Olympics protests
Vancouver Police Const. Lindsey Houghton admitted the machine has the capacity of sending out a "pulse-like noise" at adjustable volumes of up to 150 dB, and he couldn't rule out police using it as a crowd-control measure — which is how the LRAD is marketed by the manufacturer.
"Any suggestions that this device will be used as a weapon or characterizations of it as a 'sonic gun' are ridiculous. As you can see it looks nothing like a gun," said Houghton as he held the machine at a press conference Tuesday.
Sun : Vancouver police say new acoustic device could be used as weapon
Houghton said no special training is needed because the device is not complicated and involves just plugging in a microphone and pushing a button.
“There’s been talk about the pulsating noise,” he said. “Our sirens on our police cars emit a pulsating noise.”Asked if police would ever rule out using the noise to control crowds, responded, “This device could be used if the situation arose. ... We can’t rule out anything.”
The device was designed for the American military and first used publicly in North America in September as police in Pittsburgh tried to control anti-G20 demonstrators.
American Technology Corporation :
The LRAD 500X can be mounted on a variety of military vehicles including the HMMWV, LMTV, FMTV and MRAP, providing soldiers the critical capability of clearly broadcasting information, instructions and warnings to distances in excess of 2,000 meters from within their vehicles.The system can also transmit powerful deterrent tones to influence behavior or determine intent of a threat.The directionality of the LRAD device reduces the risk of exposing nearby personnel or peripheral bystanders to harmful audio levels.
"We continue to support our armed services in their peacekeeping missions around the world through increasing LRAD shipments," remarked ATC president and CEO, Tom Brown.
Yup, the 2010 Games is all about going downhill on slippery slopes really really fast.
Update : David Eby , Boris , Straight Goods , Dr. Dawg
Thanks, Aunty B.