Emergency Response Team (ERT)
The Emergency Response Team deals with situations where extreme danger/firearms are above the ability of detachments or other policing partners. Team members are highly trained and are specialized experts in weapons and a variety of tactics.
ERT team members’ skills include
- Serious crime arrest warrants
- Hostage rescue and evacuation
- Protective duties
- Penetrating blockades and strongholds
- Engaging in close-quarter combat when necessary
- Safely responding to barricaded armed subjects
ERT members respond day or night, in all types of terrain, locations and weather conditions. When there are multiple calls in one day response is prioritized according to threat.
ERT members can
- support major cases that are cross-jurisdictional in nature (eg: crime planned in one municipality, committed in another, while evidence is disposed of in a third).
- address, operate, and coordinate operations across municipal boundaries acting as a single cohesive team.
- provide expert advice to fellow police on weapons.
How do they operate?
Management of BC RCMP’s ERT teams is based out of provincial RCMP headquarters in Surrey, BC. But most ERT team members start and end their shifts at 12 different detachment/locations.
Lower Mainland ERT members are full time, and cover the entire geographic area, from Pemberton to Hope. The team is also integrated with partner municipal agencies, and serves the communities of New Westminster, Port Moody and Delta.
- The Lower Mainland ERT is the largest full time ERT of its kind in Canada.
- On average 40-50% of Lower Mainland calls have organized crime and gang involvement. The level of difficulty and time involved in the investigation of these crimes has dramatically increased over time.
Rest of BC
In Northern BC, Vancouver Island, and Southeastern BC the ERT Teams are based out of centralized locations. Some team members are full time, and when ERT is needed the response is coordinated with other specialized resources (like dogs).
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