Taser critic calls for third-party electrical testing
Last week, Public Safety Minister Peter Van Loan promised to develop a set of national rules for police Taser use -- but as Ottawa works to restore Canada's confidence in Tasers, one critic claims the real problem lies in electrical testing.
Emile Therien, past president of the Canada Safety Council, says the government is leaving itself open to huge liabilities because electrical safety standards for Tasers are being ignored.
"We need physical standards for these," Therien said. "Product certification is absolutely critical because we're talking about an electrical product, and the minister doesn't seem to be moving in that direction."
Therien believes police are endangering the public, because the Taser has never been tested or certified by either the Canadian Standards Association or the Underwriters Lab to ensure the manufacturer's safety claims are true.
"I don't think the manufacturer wants standards. We're talking product integrity, consumer confidence, officer safety, public safety -- a lot of issues," Therien said.
Though a Richmond technology firm that is developing Taser-testers, there is still no way of regularly measuring electrical output to ensure public safety, Therien added.
With a report from CTV British Columbia's Peter Grainger