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North Hills Special Response Team

The Ohio Township Police Department is a participating member and has five officers assigned to The North Hills Special Response Team in various roles, often referred to as North Hills SRT (pronounced "sert".) The North Hills Special Response Team is an elite paramilitary tactical unit consisting of police officers of numerous police departments from northern Allegheny County, as well as paramedics from Northern Allegheny County EMS agencies.  They are trained to perform high-risk operations that fall outside of the abilities of regular officers. They serve and protect 204,000 people within seventeen municipalities. 

Although participation on the team is on a voluntary basis, assignment is only granted after rigorous physical training and shooting assessments, followed by interviews with team administrators. 

Their training is ongoing, all year round, and often training in rigorous environments ranging from the coldest of days to the hottest weather the summer has to offer. The officers are trained in land and water borne operations, as well as working at great heights. In addition to law enforcement duties, each member is trained in hazardous materials response, advanced medical procedures, and rappelling operations while maintaining ongoing strict physical fitness status.

 

Operations

The North Hills SRT team operates under an administrative oversight committee, which governs the team’s organization and operation. The administrative oversight committee is comprised of three police chiefs from participating agencies within The North Hills Council of Governments. The participating agencies include;

  • Allegheny County Sheriff’s Office
  • Etna Borough Police
  • Franklin Park Borough Police
  • Hampton Township Police
  • Indiana Township Police
  • McCandless Township Police
  • Millvale Borough Police
  • Northern Regional Police
  • O’Hara Township Police
  • Ohio Township Police
  • Port Authority of Allegheny County Police
  • Reserve Township Police
  • Ross Township Police
  • Ross / Westview EMS
  • Shaler Township Police
  • Sharpsburg Police
  • West Deer Township Police
  • West View Borough Police

 

 

As a part of PEMA REGION 13, the team may also be used to assist other SWAT teams across the commonwealth. NHSRT provides a highly trained, better equipped, and larger number of officers to safely and effectively address the most serious of police confrontations. NHSRT is responsible for responding to: 

  • Barricaded subjects         
  • High-risk warrant services
  • Hostage situations
  • Sniper situations
  • Other unusual occurrences beyond the tactical capabilities of normal police resources

 

Team Members

Tactical team members, known as "operators," have attended basic and advanced SWAT schools through the National Tactical Officers Association. Additionally, many operators have also attended advanced training in topics such as: 

  • Mechanical, Ballistic, and Explosive Breaching
  • Firearms Instruction
  • Hostage Rescue
  • Less Lethal Instruction
  • Rappelling and Rope Evacuation
  • Tactical Combat Casualty Care
  • Hazardous Materials operations level

Sniper / Observers & Medics

The tactical team is also composed of a Sniper / Observer Element. Sniper/Observers have attended various basic and advanced sniper schools in addition to their basic and advanced SWAT training. 

TEMS Medics (Tactical Emergency Medical Services) are all highly trained paramedics with Ross/West View and Shaler/Hampton EMS agencies. Many of them have years of service with various fire departments and Urban Search and Rescue Teams, bringing additional skillsets to the team.

Crisis Negotiation Team (CNT)

These officers have skillsets in assessing individuals during a crisis situation in order to determine their propensity for violence and willingness to have dialogue. They are able to discreetly enter a crisis zone and initiate dialogue with suspects, hostage takers and others during times of great stress. CNT members are also trained in the use of various surveillance equipment.

Motto

Solve Forsit is Latin for “Solve the Problem.” The North Hills Special Response Team does exactly that every day. Whether as team or as individual officers, members pride themselves in being force multipliers for the North Hills and the Region.