Bouncers Being Given 'Smart Water' To Help Police Arrest Drunk People
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Bouncers are now being given ‘Smart Water’ to help arrest drunk people, who can be tagged by the spray so that police are aware of troublemakers.
The Smart Water acts like a permanent marker, which can be simply sprayed onto problem punters to save door staff from having to chase after them.
Police can then later find those who have been sprayed by shining a UV light on them to show they have been tagged.
The new scheme comes after research found that violence and abuse against pub staff and bouncers rose dramatically following the Covid pandemic.
It follows a successful trial last October, when bouncers in Hereford were armed with SmartTag.
Pubs, bars and nightclubs across Herefordshire, Worcestershire and Shropshire are now also due to train staff to use the aerosol-style spray.
Sergeant Nick Hall, of West Mercia Police, said: “This is an exciting step in our continued efforts to challenge anti-social behaviour, keep people safe and protect them and staff from harm.
“This new technology and its deployment will help us to address some of the elements relating to anti-social behaviour which are seen especially in our night time economy and send a positive message to our communities that we are doing all we can to address their concerns.
“We will hand over the new equipment to those people responsible for keeping your pubs, bars and clubs safe places to relax and have fun and who often face a barrage of abuse and violence.
“By safely tagging individuals, officers patrolling the community can easily identify them and progress any required enforcement.”
The method is being rolled out to bouncers after a successful trial, which saw the Smart Water sprays handed out to 400 Co-op security guards after a spike in attacks against frontline staff.
Tyler Haines, who is deputy doorman at Play Nightclub in Hereford - and whose team now uses SmartTag - explained how the spray appears to be working already.
Haines said: “In January we attended an incident within our club where two men were very aggressive, assaulting door staff and assaulting customers.
“As the situation got unpredictable I took the decision to pull out SmartTag to deter the two men however, one man went to punch me and so SmartTag was deployed at them.
“Both men fled the scene and diffused the situation.”