Police on horses ?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Kirk Gunn, Mar 24, 2003.

  1. Kirk Gunn

    Kirk Gunn Screenwriter

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    I don't get it... Police on horseback in an urban area. Is this effective, and for what ? Isn't it relatively expensive to care for horses, especially keeping them ready for whatever action they may meet in a metropolitan financial district ?

    Someone enlighten me !
    Thanks
     
  2. Chris Lockwood

    Chris Lockwood Producer

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    Horses can go places cars can't, plus the view from up there is probably useful.
     
  3. Clinton McClure

    Clinton McClure Casual Enthusiast
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    Add the speed of a good steed and Chris hit the nail on the head.
     
  4. Mary M S

    Mary M S Screenwriter

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    During crowd control on the pavement in a city. To many urbanities, a horse is a tad intimidating coming at a slow but steady pace towards you. I'm assuming from the body language of pedestrians I see on the 10 o'clock news, and what I have seen in reality when I take a non-horsey person out to the barn. Surely a psychological advantage the Police hope for.
     
  5. Mike Lenthol

    Mike Lenthol Second Unit

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  6. Karl_Luph

    Karl_Luph Supporting Actor

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    An animal that size can lay a man out flat with one swift kick. Very effectively.
     
  7. andrew markworthy

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    Police horses are generally kept for crowd control, where they are very effective. They intimidate crowd members and at the same time the rider can get a better view of what's going on. Go to Brit soccer matches on days when trouble is expected between rival fans, and you'll see a few of them. [​IMG]

    In everyday life, the intimidation/crowd control factor isn't needed, but the horses still need exercise and also need to be accustomed to urban conditions. Accordingly, they will be used for patrols. I doubt in this instance if in most cases they're any more effective than a foot patrol, though there may be some PR value in it.
     
  8. Rain

    Rain Producer

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    Personally, I think it's mostly PR.

    In Vancouver it seems like the cops on horseback are usually "patrolling" areas where nothing ever happens anyway.
     
  9. Holadem

    Holadem Lead Actor

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    Since the post that prompted my [​IMG] seems to have been quietly vaporized 1984 fashion, I guess my smiley is useless now...

    --
    Holadem
     
  10. Danny R

    Danny R Supporting Actor

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    I've seen video of police on horseback pushing a crowd back. Its not just PR, because they are very effective.

    For one thing, people who would have no problems throwing a brick at a cop are reluctant to hurt a poor horsey.
     
  11. Brett_H

    Brett_H Second Unit

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    Guaranteed work for the street-cleanup crew.

    I found it ironic when I went to a Browns game last year that they had mounted patrols moving through the crowd, encouraging people to control their litter, all the while dropping huge horse bombs in the parking lot...

    -Brett.
     
  12. Jeff Gatie

    Jeff Gatie Lead Actor

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    Although a PR tool most of the time, mounted Police are highly trained in crowd control. The intimidation factor of the large animal combined with the horse's natural herding function and a trained rider equals am invaluable tool.

    A good friend of the family became a mounted Boston cop in the 70's and he said he took the job because of the PR, tradition and ceremony - and then the busing riots came. He soon learned how important Police Horses are in an urban environment.
     
  13. Francois Caron

    Francois Caron Cinematographer

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  14. John Spencer

    John Spencer Supporting Actor

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    Well, the cost is a little high. Police forces have attempted to use more cost effective methods, but none have presented themselves. And let me just say that, although it was highly cost-effective, Goat Force Alpha was deemed an utter failure in all other categories.

    [​IMG]
     
  15. Chris Lockwood

    Chris Lockwood Producer

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    > all the while dropping huge horse bombs in the parking lot

    Imagine what it was like before cars, when everyone was traveling via horse or other animal.
     
  16. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Moderator
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    Remember the Ahnuld-on-the-horse scene in "True Lies"? Horses, obviously, have more sense than super spies as well. [​IMG]
     
  17. KerryK

    KerryK Stunt Coordinator

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    I think here in Toronto they're mostly for PR because they don't usually bring them out to protests, etc.

     
  18. Seth_S

    Seth_S Second Unit

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    Hmm. In downtown Philadelphia it seems like horseback cops can only be found around parks. I'm guessing this is done because it's obviously a lot easier to ride a horse into a park instead of a police car if they're needed.
     
  19. Todd K

    Todd K Second Unit

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  20. Greg*go

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