Lufkin police say BATT-X rescue vehicle is a defensive option

Lufkin police say BATT-X rescue vehicle is a defensive option

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - The general appearance of Lufkin's Ballistic Armored Tactical Transport rescue vehicle comes off like a cross between a vehicle and a tank.

But Lufkin's Chief of Police David Thomas' description shows a more defensive piece of machinery.

"There's nothing offensive on the vehicle," Thomas said. "The most offensive thing on it is how it looks."

"The citizens will be able to take advantage of this if there's an active shooter or an active attack," Thomas said. "And, we can put this vehicle between our citizens and harm's way."

Thomas added that the LPD has been looking into getting this type of vehicle for years.

"It's kind of gotten to a point where we're almost liable for not having an armored vehicle or a rescue vehicle in town," Thomas said.

And, to a tactical operations professional like Lufkin's director of public safety, Gerald Williamson, the BATT-X solves the most common risk for police and civilians.

"So many times, it's fire arms," Williamson said.

The vehicle also gives police another option when it comes to a dangerous suspect.

"It also buys you a lot more time in tactical situations, where, used to, our only options was usually lethal force to counter lethal force," Williamson said.

Lufkin's city council approved over $60,000 towards the purchase of the rescue vehicle.

"Any time we can increase the safety and the public, that is a good thing to do," said Lufkin's city manager, Keith Wright.

The BATT-X will also be available to the entire DETCOG region.

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