Car teaches new cadets to skid

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If Superior Court Judge Mike Annis always drove like he did Thursday, it's likely he would end up in a courtroom much like his own facing another judge.

The Augusta Judicial Circuit judge squealed tires around a track as one of the first to test Augusta Technical College's new skid-car vehicle at the Richmond County Sheriff's Training Center.

Described as a Ford Crown Victoria on training wheels, the vehicle will be used to teach new cadets how to handle rough weather and tight turns when the school's new 18-week police training program begins next month.

"It's running at low speeds but it gives you the feeling of traveling at high speeds," said Ken Jones, a professor of criminology. "You go into skids and slides and you learn how to maneuver during ice, snow and wet road conditions."

Judge Annis, along with student Audrea Espinoza, were mock students. The real test was for the instructors, who just completed certification.

Instructor Alfonso Williams pushed buttons on a keypad to command the vehicle's hydraulic system to raise and lower traction for the front and back tires. With the right amount of pressure, he took the "students" through a winding course of orange cones -- teaching them how to swing wide to prepare for slipping.

"Speed is not the issue here," Mr. Williams said. "It's all about the fundamentals of driving."

Mr. Jones said they already have 14 potential students ready for the school's inaugural public safety class.

The students will get training in constitutional law and criminal procedures, along with skill areas such as weapons training and emergency vehicle operations. They will receive college credit and be halfway to obtaining their associate's degree.

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BakersfieldCityLimits
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BakersfieldCityLimits 12/12/08 - 11:09 am
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Please tell me why, when the

Please tell me why, when the state police academy is shutting down for the next two months due to budget cuts, and there is already a regional academy in Augusta, are we starting another place to train police that local governments are unable to hire?

Might this be the start of the plan that the holder of the office of The Office of the President-Elect Obama to have a civilian national police force under his direct control? Yeah I'm crazy, when President Elect Obama laid out his plan, he didn't mean it, and everyone that mentions it is crazy.

hoser123
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hoser123 12/12/08 - 01:04 pm
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The students will have to go

The students will have to go to the same damn place the regular regional academy is at to use the damn car, [filtered word].

rufus
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rufus 12/12/08 - 04:38 pm
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Watch your language hoser :)

Watch your language hoser :)

steelermoose1
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steelermoose1 12/12/08 - 04:39 pm
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yeah, so these geniuses have

yeah, so these geniuses have thought of everything. It is triple the cost of the Regional Police Academy. No dept is going to send them to this course when they can send to the basic mandate class and get the VERY SAME [filtered word]T. certified officer in 10 weeks. Then the individual depts train them in their policies and procedures...Hmmm Plus Alfonso Williams is an instructor, that should tell you something!!!

elwyn
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elwyn 12/15/08 - 06:49 pm
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The new 18 week academy for

The new 18 week academy for Augusta Tech along with 5 other pilot schools in Georgia were chosen through an initiative by our Georgia govenor and Commissioner of our Technical Schools Ron Jackson. The 18 week course gives each student 700 hours of training instead of the 408 hours at our local academy which by the way is working with Augusta Tech to start this project. Lt John Young who is also in this article is an instructor at the 10 week academy.

Augusta Tech absorbs all tuition costs and allows $200 for books and is providing the Training Manuals free of charge. When students graduate they will have 59 hours of college credits and need only 53 hours to have a 2 year associate degree. I think this is absolutely incredible to have college trained officers out there on our streets.

aktr1
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aktr1 01/22/09 - 11:41 am
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I was at this demo and it was

I was at this demo and it was fun but this car simulates at low speeds the conditions and traction of a car going at high speeds (20mph=80mph roughly) And this program is only free If you have hope and you still have to pay over 300 for the application screening process and another 200-300 for supplies.

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