March 24, 2005
United Kingdom Home Office Approves Use of TASER X26
Approval based on computer modeling and independent medical testing, results corroborate safety margins as published in PACE supplement.
SCOTTSDALE, AZ - TASER International, Inc. (NASDAQ: TASR), a market leader in advanced non-lethal devices announced today that the Home Office released a Ministerial Statement approving use of the TASER™ X26 conducted energy device for authorized firearms officers throughout England and Wales.
According to a Ministerial Statement by the Home Office, "The Defense Scientific Advisory Council (DSAC) Sub Committee on the Medical implications of Less Lethal Weapons (DOMILL) was invited to provide a statement on the medical implications of the use of the X26 TASER. The DOMILL statement confirms that the risk of a life-threatening event arising from the direct interaction of the currents of the X26 TASER with the heart is less than the already low risk of such an event from the M26 TASER." (emphasis added) Authorization for the deployment of the X26 TASER follows a Defense Scientific Advisory Council (DSAC) Sub Committee on the Medical implications of Less Lethal Weapons (DOMILL) statement on the comparative medical implications of the use of the X26 TASER and the M26 Advanced TASER. A July 2004 statement from DOMILL concluded that: "The risk of life-threatening or serious injuries from the M26 Taser is very low."
"I have therefore authorized Chief Officers to make the X26 TASER available to Authorized Firearms Officers in their force for use as a less lethal alternative for use in situations where a firearms authority has been granted in accordance with criteria laid down in the ACPO Manual of Guidance on Police Use of Firearms. The authorization for the M26 TASER remains in force," concluded the Ministerial Statement.
Other relevant highlights from the report include:
- A comprehensive review by the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) was conducted by cardiac and nerve electrophysiologists, physicists, engineers, and trauma specialists on over 800 references.
- Groundbreaking modeling of current flow in the body, and its intensity using Computational Electromagnetic Modeling (CEM) was conducted to determine the changes in current magnitude and distribution for different barb separations and TASER outputs. - The results show that simulated M26 and X26 waveforms, even when amplified, are not capable of eliciting Ventricular Fibrillation (VF) when applied to the ventricular muscle of guinea pigs hearts (Langendorff preparation), even though they are presumable more susceptible than human hearts.
- The safety factor for Ventricular Fibrillation (VF) was greater than 70-fold the modeled current density for the M26 and greater than 240-fold the modeled current density predicted to occur at the heart for the X26.
- A report produced by PricewaterhouseCoopers from the operational trials concluded that use of the M26 TASER "helped secure a positive outcome to an incident minimizing the potential need for officers to deploy other, possibly more lethal technologies."
- "Some frequently abused drugs have the potential to contribute to any cardiac-related morbidity or mortality that may arise in the context of TASER use. Furthermore, it seems reasonable to assume that this conclusion could be generalized to other emotionally charged and possibly violent confrontations with law enforcement personnel."
- "DOMILL is not aware of any deaths from primary injuries with this weapon, in both operational and volunteer use in North America."
"The announcement by the UK Home Office allows agencies to deploy to the firearms officers our more advanced TASER X26 to save lives in the United Kingdom," said Tom Smith, president and co-founder of TASER International. "While deployments have been very encouraging in the UK since the TASER M26 was authorized on September 15, 2004, most agencies were awaiting the approval of the X26 to get a device with improved features and a smaller design for deployment. This is a resounding approval of greater wide-spread use of TASER technology in the UK, we expect to see this echoed throughout Europe and other international countries that have been following the lead of the United Kingdom," stated Smith.
"It is also very encouraging that these recent studies utilized state-of-the-art computer modeling to characterize the TASER electromagnetic interactions with the superficial tissues of the body, and the flow of currents to the heart. Furthermore, this independent research corroborates the results reported in the January 2005 peer-reviewed supplement Pacing and Clinical Electrophysiology (PACE) Journal, which found significant safety margins for the X26 TASER," concluded Smith.
Pro-Tect Systems is the exclusive distributor of the M26 and X26 TASER products to the United Kingdom and will continue to provide all of our support to the police forces throughout the United Kingdom as the TASER X26 begins its deployment.
About TASER International, Inc.
TASER International, Inc. provides advanced non-lethal devices for use in the law enforcement, military, private security and personal defense markets. TASER devices use proprietary technology to safely incapacitate dangerous, combative or high-risk subjects who pose a risk to law enforcement officers, innocent citizens or themselves. TASER technology saves lives every day, and the use of TASER devices dramatically reduces injury rates for police officers and suspects and reduces litigation costs. For more information on TASER life-saving technology, please call TASER International at (800) 978-2737 or visit our website at www.TASER.com.