The Special Response Team is one of the newest specialty units to come on line at the Sheriff's Office. Clearly... the unit was born out of necessity and the dangerous times we live in.
Think of this unit as a SWAT Team that is prepared and equipped to perform an already difficult, dangerous, and demanding enforcement activity in an environment or crime scene involving biological hazards or hazardous chemicals.
While the impetus for the formation of this unit clearly came out of the tragic events on September 11, 2001 in New York City and the threats of terrorist activity in any jurisdiction in America, they have already proven themselves in local law enforcement issues.
The Special Response Team (SRT) consists of 20 SWAT operators and 10 ERT members. The primary mission of the SRT is the safe resolution of high risk incidents which occur in a chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, and/or explosive environment.
The team is also tasked with securing areas hostile to Fire Department personnel so they can evacuate and treat victims who may have been contaminated by a Weapon of Mass Destruction event. The SRT is also used for executing search warrants at methamphetamine laboratories and conducted three this year. The team received 1,200 hours of training this year and trains regularly with the Orange County Fire Department Hazmat teams.