Our Commitment to Safety
In response to the series of articles on TASER conducted electrical weapons (CEWs) published by Reuters, we have provided the following statement and resources:
Our mission is to protect life and we prioritize the safety of our customers and the people they serve above all else. TASER CEWs are not risk free but they are proven safer than batons, fists, take downs, tackles and impact munitions. They are also the most studied less-lethal weapon in the world with more than 700 reports, abstracts, letters and studies on the safety of TASER weapons and more than 3.5 million deployments over 24 years. Any loss of life is a tragedy regardless of the circumstance, which is why we remain committed to developing technology and training to protect life in public safety.
Axon is deeply invested in the safety of our communities, and we believe that safety comes hand in hand with transparency. It is important to us to hold absolute confidence in the safety of our products. As a direct result of that belief, we ensure our products undergo vigorous research and testing both in-house and through third parties and continue testing and monitoring even after they have been released.
Safest Intermediate Use of Force
Though not without risk, TASER CEWs are proven to be safer than other use of force options. A 2009 Wake Forest University study concluded that 99.75% of 1,201 field uses of TASER weapons in a wide range of drug and alcohol influences, ages, and race resulted in no significant injuries, demonstrating that the TASER device is the safest intermediate use-of-force option for police.
Studies have found that:
- TASER CEWs are the most studied less lethal tool on an officer’s belt with more than 700 safety studies, human studies, abstracts, reports, letters, etc and 78% are independent.
- 18,000+ law enforcement agencies in 107 countries deploy TASER CEWs resulting in more than 192,515 lives saved from potential death or serious injury.
Our response to Reuters’ issues of TASER CEW Misuse
“We do not condone torture of any kind — our technology is designed to protect life and reduce harm to all parties involved during high risk, violent, and response-to-resistance situations.”
Our training explicitly states, when reasonable:
- Use the minimum force necessary to accomplish lawful objectives
- Use force only on those “actively resisting” or higher
- Give a verbal warning before the use of force
- Use properly. Use a CEW only for its intended purpose, in legally justifiable situations, and in accordance with your agency’s Guidance. Do not use for torture.