Police Federation

Unveiling the new TASER 10

National Chair Steve Hartshorn's feedback on Axon's new TASER 10.

20 February 2023


'Game Changer' – two words that I feel sum up the latest iteration in the development and evolution of the next generation of TASER. Axon held its worldwide launch on the 25 January 2023 with live demonstrations on stage to show how effective this new device, the TASER 10, is. Don't worry if you are wondering where T8 and nine have gone, they haven't – this new device was potentially due to be called the T8, but for a reason you'll see below, it's been born as the T10.

On an initial look at the new device, it has the same distinctive yellow and black casing that is familiar to many users around the globe. But the deeper changes that make this version stand out from its predecessors will make policing safer.

One of the most noticeable changes is officers can deploy up to 10 individually targeted probes without needing to reload cartridges. With previous versions, it was one cartridge with two probes, which, if needed and depending on the model, required a cartridge change or only had a two-discharge option before reloading to re-engage.

The first Taser I was issued with on Armed Response Vehicle in 2005 was the M26 and I was supplied with four cartridges (eight probes overall). Having an increased ability to load two more probes isn't that significant. Still, it will undoubtedly start a conversation. It's now easier to re-engage in situations, as the officer can focus solely on that person to re-assess and reduce risk overall instead of thinking about a reload and losing focus.

The initial trigger squeeze discharges a single probe without electrical output and is aimed where the user requires it to be, based on the threat and risk, to obtain a good connection point. The second trigger squeeze discharges a second probe, again considering all of the circumstances to create neuromuscular incapacitation (NMI). It’s the user who now decides on probe placement and the angle of spread, which negates having to work out if either probe, but in particular the lower probe, will connect often in times of increased risk and danger.

The T10 device now has a maximum effective range of 13.72 metres (45 feet), almost double the distance of previous models. If the working environment allows, this ability to work at a greater distance will provide officers with more time, space, and distance to de-escalate and resolve conflicts in a way they didn't have before, making it safer for all involved.

Having tried this device, I know it's accurate at the max distance, and it felt like you had more time to plan your decisions properly and take in a fuller picture. It's intuitive to use, feels balanced, and as good as it is to use a greater distance, the ability to decide where to place the probes for NMI is equally as good in close quarters, small rooms, or vehicles for example.

The familiar arcing sound that we have all been trained to acknowledge has gone and is replaced by a new digital sci-fi sound that will quickly become synonymous with T10 for police officers and the public. Think back to every sci-fi film you've watched and the sounds when the futuristic weapons are charged up and ready for use, and you are already getting close to what it sounds like.

This version now has a 1000-lumen strobe ability in warning mode to help with de-escalation and may prevent a discharge due to the ability to disorientate before activation. It retains the ability to cross-connect with the correct probes to provide the best NMI. It will only deliver the exact charge no matter how many probes are used, with a max of four being utilised to assist with effective probe placement.

VR capability is also being developed so that training with a VR headset can allow any user to link a T10 device with a VR capability. All the activity can be logged and kept, developing competence with the device. This saves money on cartridge probes in training and will enable officers to retain and build on technical ability anywhere they can use a headset without needing additional instructional staff. Other cartridges will also be available, training, hook and loop, and inert, which are used in practical training sessions.

A safety upgrade feature includes onboard sensors that can pair with specific holsters to show when the device was drawn or replaced from the holster and the ability to switch on local body worn video (BWV).

When you consider there is a duty in international law to provide less harmful methods of managing situations, as well as the UK law to use reasonable, necessary, and proportionate uses of force, the ability of the new T10 provides several de-escalations opportunities in terms of improved distance, strobe lighting and an ability to select the best area for NMI. This product is a game changer.

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