Alaska may become the first state in the U.S. to ban the use of Tasers on wildlife after the state’s Board of Game passed a proposal that would prohibit the use of “electronic control devices” for hunting. That’s a rather generic term to describe a Taser, a device that uses electricity, delivered by two electrodes on the end of wires, to incapacitate its victim. The weapons are often used by law enforcement to safely subdue a person without doing permanent damage.
Park Rangers and wildlife management officers in Alaska have been carrying Tasers for a number of months now, and the devices have proved quite useful, particularly with bear and moose. Rangers on the Kenai Peninsula for instance, equate carrying a Taser to having an “electric fence in a person’s hand,” using them regularly to scare the animals out of areas they shouldn’t be in. The weapons have even been used, from time to time. to stun an animal to assist it in some way. One ranger recently Tased a moose for instance, so that he could remove a chicken feeder that had become stuck on its head. Before letting the moose go, he was also able to check the overall health of the creature as well.
Now, the fear is that private citizens may start using Tasers to subdue an animal in order to get a picture taken with downed creature. Since the devices can be unreliable at times, especially without proper training, this opens the door to all kinds of potential problems, including permanently injuring or even killing the animal. The hunter could find themselves in trouble as well if the animal were to shake off the effects of the Taser while they’re standing next to it for that photograph.
If the new proposal becomes law, then only properly trained law enforcement officials would be able to use Tasers on wildlife. Perhaps we should rethink this plan however, as anyone who is crazy enough to try to use a Taser on a grizzly bear, just to get close enough for a photograph, may need an introduction to a little concept known as “survival of the fittest.”
If you’re taking a bus to the airport, the last thing you want to see is one of your fellow passengers carrying a gun, especially if you’re in England and you know the guy probably doesn’t have permission to own one.
That’s just what happened to a passenger going to Gatwick Airport near London this morning. As soon as his bus arrived at the airport’s South Terminal he notified police and they wasted no time tasering the suspect and putting him in custody. According to this early report nobody else was injured and the suspect, who is described only as a man in his 40s, apparently had not made any threats to passengers or airport staff. He is now being questioned.
Gadling will post a followup to this story as more details emerge.
Stories showing the incompetence of some of the agents in charge of screening our airports are getting a little boring – unfortunately the TSA keeps providing new examples of just how inefficient they can be.
An incident at Albany International Airport is just another where the TSA checkpoint missed a potentially hazardous item.
Amy Burns had passed through the checkpoint with her child and a stroller. Nobody at the checkpoint found anything, so she proceeded to the gate.
It wasn’t until a ramp worker prepared to load her stroller into the baggage hold when he discovered a stun gun stowed in the storage basket of the stroller.
Instead of admitting failure and apologizing for the mistake, a TSA spokesperson tried to spin things to make it appear that their “multiple levels of security” prevented the stun gun from getting on the plane. I was not aware that ramp workers were now part of the TSA.
In fact, had the passenger not left the item in her stroller, she would have been able to bring it on board. Of course, there is no evidence that she had intended to use it on the flight, but in a day and age where a nail file is considered a potential weapon, being able to sneak a stun gun past the trained security officers does not give me much faith in their screening skills.