EPS said the criminal flight, which lasted over an hour and saw the vehicle run red lights and reach speeds over 100 km/h, could have been much more dangerous.
“At certain speeds, ground units no longer give chase, and when a suspect doesn’t think they’re being pursued, they tend to slow down,” said Const. Chris Anderson, an EPS Tactical Flight Officer.
Boasting a 98.9 per cent apprehension rate, Air One also works with RCMP in outlying areas and to find missing children or Alzheimer’s patients. As well, the helicopter works proactively in high-crime areas, looking for suspicious activities from its aerial vantage point.
Air One is also able to work in darkness thanks to a FLIR (Forward Looking Infra-Red) which measures differences in surface temperatures—cars, colours, people, movement—all visible on the on-board computer.
“It’s a co-ordinated approach between air and ground. We’re an invaluable resource that helps insure safety for public and police,” said Anderson.