Search Legislation

Police Reform Act 2002

Section 6: Regulation of equipment

36.This section amends section 53 of the 1996 Act, which regulates the standard of equipment used by police forces. It will allow the Secretary of State to make regulations, which may be used to ensure that all forces use only equipment that has been approved. ‘Equipment’ will include, for example, vehicles, IT systems, batons, incapacitant sprays, headgear or protective clothing.

37.The section replaces subsections (2) and (3) of section 53 of the 1996 Act with new subsections (1A) to (2C). New subsection (1A)enables regulations to be made requiring all police forces to use specified equipment, or equipment, which is of a description specified, or type approved by the Secretary of State. The latter provision builds on existing provisions in road traffic legislation (for example, section 20 of the Road Traffic Offenders Act 1988 and section 11 of the Road Traffic Act 1988) to type approve speed cameras, breathalyser equipment and other equipment used to enforce road traffic laws. The type approval of equipment may be made subject to conditions as to its use. Regulations may also be made under subsection (1A) to require forces to keep available for use specified or type approved equipment. This may be relevant where one force is providing mutual aid to another and it is necessary that officers use the same or comparable equipment. The use of specified equipment or equipment of a specified description may also be prohibited under the regulation-making power. Before making any regulations under section 53 as amended, the Secretary of State must consult those whom he considers represent the interests of police authorities and chief officers of police. Where this formulation occurs in existing legislation, the Secretary of State currently consults the APA and ACPO and/or CPOSA. The Secretary of State may also consult anyone else he chooses (new subsection (2)). This replaces the requirement in existing subsections (2) and (3) to consult the Police Information Technology Organisation in respect of any regulations relating to information technology. By virtue of new subsection (2B), statutory instruments made under the amended section 53 are subject to the negative resolution procedure.

Back to top


Print Options


Explanatory Notes

Text created by the government department responsible for the subject matter of the Act to explain what the Act sets out to achieve and to make the Act accessible to readers who are not legally qualified. Explanatory Notes were introduced in 1999 and accompany all Public Acts except Appropriation, Consolidated Fund, Finance and Consolidation Acts.


More Resources

Access essential accompanying documents and information for this legislation item from this tab. Dependent on the legislation item being viewed this may include:

  • the original print PDF of the as enacted version that was used for the print copy
  • lists of changes made by and/or affecting this legislation item
  • confers power and blanket amendment details
  • all formats of all associated documents
  • correction slips
  • links to related legislation and further information resources