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October 24, 2017

Philadelphia police will be outfitted with body cameras, safer squad cars

Philadelphia’s police officers will now be outfitted with body-worn cameras, following a growing trend already in place throughout Miami, San Francisco, New York and Detroit.

WHYY reported that the Philadelphia Police Department will outfit 4,000 officers with the cameras, as well as give patrols 150 safer squad cars.

While selecting the cameras, however, WHYY pointed out that Philly didn’t exactly shop around to find the best deal. Officials said they would find the best monetary deal for the cameras. In the end, the city went with a four-year, $12.5 million contract with the manufacturer Axon, formerly known as Taser International, to outfit the patrol force.

The cars reportedly have upgraded shields with better bullet protection from the front doors to the windows. Ten additional patrol wagons are expected by February 2018, each equipped with technology that can halt shotgun and pistol fires.

The new cars also give police officers the almighty power to change traffic lights. The vehicles carry technology that enables officers to remotely change a traffic signal to green when their emergency lights are on.

The upgrades cost a reported $1,300 per police cruiser.