Disasters as brutal and unprecedented as Hurricane Harvey are rare, but are something that our first responders must always be prepared for at a moments notice and take quick action. Police officers in the Houston area (see image above) have worked tirelessly over the past week to make sure that lives were saved and that families could find refuge from the storm.
We have officers that have not been home in 4 or 5 days, with little rest. Those that did manage to get off to run home and change, lost their vehicles because they came back to the station parking lot only to find that it had flooded their personal vehicles. Many officers also damaged their equipment while wading through the high water. Many of them worked the flooded streets as their own homes lay in wet ruins.
They are currently working with damaged equipment, and trying to make due with water-damaged items such as work boots, duty belts, flashlights, and holsters. Some have even lost these items in the flood waters, not to mention their uniforms, which are soaked, soured, and torn. Officers will be in need of replacement items to ensure that they can do their job to the fullest of their ability. Donations will go to supply officers with needed items such as tube socks, underwear, toiletries as well as the aforementioned equipment. Thank you again for your generosity.
More images can be found in the Photo Gallery: Hurricane Harvey
Thank you to David Conniker of Mustang Caterpillar located at Pinemont and 290, this man called and asked to help with the rescue efforts. David volunteered a number of his dump trucks, at great risk to his business, and they have now been operating for days, with officers, saving people.
There are thousands of stories like this, David and his team are true heroes. The words thank you are not enough to express what we feel for you and your team.
Brothers and Sisters,
I know many of you are out there risking your lives, to save other lives, during this catastrophe that is going on. Please be careful out there, as the number one life you want to save is your own. Without your life, you can't save another.
As some of us are approaching being away from our families for 48 hours, it is important to thank all the spouses who are holding down the fort while we are gone.
In the case where both parents are officers, thank every to the grandmother, grandfather, aunt, uncle, brother, sister etc, that has answered the call to help officers. Without our support system we would be unable to protect our community. From the bottom of all of our hearts, THANK YOU!
As some of y'all know, the FOP has a natural disaster fund that every FOP member is always asked to donate into. That's how the funds are generated. Financial assistance will be made available on a case by case basis. Please videotape your whole house inside and out, before and after the flood damage. They'll have 90 days to file a claim with FOP. Get with any board member for the claim form.
Thank you and God Bless!
Make sure you have plenty of water, canned goods, and flashlights. Please do not take any unnecessary risks and travel when you shouldn't, as it will ultimately place first responders' safety in jeopardy. Houston is a resilient city and we will get through this together! Stay informed of the weather and Hurricane Harvey here.
We would like to thank Constable Alan Rosen and the Harris County Constable Pct 1 Deputies for teaming up with us for this year's Back To School Back Pack Program. We donated 100's of back packs to needy children and provided cases of water to keep people hydrated for this hot day, and for those playing the three-on-three basketball contest at Eisenhower High School. This successful event was a great community outreach program, and it was certainly a pleasure working with the Constable's Office. Thank you to all that volunteered their time to be here.
The below information is for those Officers who carry the Sig Sauer P320 and is in response to the viral video making the rounds of the Sig firing when it is dropped.
HPD Sergeant Robert Sandoval and his officers at the gun range immediately conducted their own test and found that more than 10% of the time when the Sig P320 was dropped on the back of the weapon, it would fire.
Robert immediately contacted Sig, who gave a generic press release response that it had "passed previous federal drop tests".
Robert continued to call Sig working his way through their hierarchy, till finally they agreed to exchange all faulty pistols for new ones. However, he didn't stop there, he is now working with Sig to ensure that they come out to a department facility to do the exchanges, in order to make it easier for our officers.
I would like to thank Robert and Officer Joe Gamaldi, HPOU Vice President, for doing a wonderful job in handling this complicated situation.
I am working with Joe on a joint effort for any of our members that may be carrying the Sig model. If you are in possession of said model, please contact me ASAP.
Houston Metro Police Union FOP
Sig Sauer P320 “drop test” issue:
The HPD Training Division has recently learned that Sig Sauer has identified a condition whereby the P320 models could possibly discharge if dropped in a certain way:
If the weapon is dropped and the weapon hits a hard surface with the frame and back of the slide at the same time, the weapon could discharge.
Members of the Firearms Unit of the HPD Training Division were able to duplicate the “drop test failure,” therefore caution must be used when handling the Sig Sauer P320 models.
Sig Sauer issued a public Press Release on September 8th, 2017, acknowledging the safety concern of an unintentional discharge with the P320 models when dropped. Sig Sauer plans to have a special program for the Houston Police Department to replace all Sig Sauer P320 models and calibers. The one-for-one replacements include both Primary and Off-Duty weapons. Firearms Unit staff are currently coordinating that effort with Sig Sauer.
The new P320s will incorporate many upgraded parts and functions, including functional enhancements that are being implemented to the slide, trigger, and magazine.
We are sad to report that retired canine Officer "Shadow" was laid to rest. He will be sorely missed, as he was a great asset to the Metro Police Department.
The leadership of Houston Metro Police, Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 98 would like to remind our members to KEEP THEIR FIELD NOTES as mandated by the State.
In February, we reported that two brothers, sons of passed Metro Officer Phillip Suarez, helped a 92 year old women to safety after falling in her driveway and unable to call for help in Kingwood. Today, the Metro board honored them and recognized them at the board meeting. Congrats to the Suarez Family.
Brothers and Sisters,
One of the biggest items that we're trying to improve on is communication within our organization. It is highly encouraged for our members to register here at our NEW Website and download our NEW Mobile App, so that you can receive live updates through text and/or email. It only takes a few minutes and has proved to be highly informative. For those already registered, thanks and let other members know the benefits of a registering.
Stay Safe. Watch your six!
Brother and Sisters,
We have some exciting news. Today we reached another milestone and kicked off our Mobile App for Android and iOS Phones and Tablets. We hope that this additional resource to your Tablet or Smartphone can make things more accessible, then having to log completely into the website. This is something new and exciting for the Lodge. The Mobile App is under FOP 98 and we have direct links to Google Play and iTunes App Store in the module in the left column. You must be a registered member of the website to access the Members Only Section of the Mobile App.
What's New at FOP 98
As some members have already seen, the biweekly dues have gone up from $17.00 to $21.00 bi-weekly. This increase was proposed months ago at a monthly meeting and was passed by the membership. The dues increase was due to the rising costs of services and to continue to provide quality services to our members. We are still at a competitive price with other unions in the area, as our executive board still continues not to be paid for any services. Most, if not all unions in the area, have employees on payroll, but we continue to run our organization with volunteers only. Also as a reminder, this is the first time we have ever had to raise our dues, and secondly we only deduct twice a month, even though members are paid three times a month, twice a year. Please contact any board member if you have further questions. Thank you and continue to watch your six!