Local Cops Play in Simulators to Keep Driving Skills Fresh

Valley police have been practicing their driving skills in a video-game-like simulator on loan from the Arizona Peace Officer Standards and Training Board.

Tolleson's officers were required to train on the machine a couple of weeks ago, says the West Valley View. It's housed in a 42-foot trailer that gets hauled around to various departments.

Although the driver's seat is designed to look like a Ford Crown Victoria, a standard cop car, the software also simulates a dump truck, fire truck, or sport-utility vehicle. The big-boy game includes "evasive accident avoidance, Code 3 emergency driving and pursuits," among its scenarios.

Sounds like a hoot.

Maybe even a little too intense: According to one Tolleson police sergeant, "the average person can only handle about six [scenarios] without getting motion sickness."

We're pretty sure that doesn't apply to teenagers.

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Ray Stern has worked as a newspaper reporter in Arizona for more than two decades. He's won numerous awards for his reporting, including the Arizona Press Club's Don Bolles Award for Investigative Journalism.