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Saturday 25 March 2023 Dublin: 12°C
# fitness tests
Police chief tells overweight officers: You shouldn't be 'waddling down the road'
Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe said officers should lose weight or else risk losing their jobs.

THE HEAD OF the Metropolitan Police has said that some officers need to lose weight or else risk losing their jobs.

In a interview with Radio Times, Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe said unfit police men and women who repeatedly fail fitness tests should face sanctions and possibly be fired.

Hogan-Howe (57) said he had recently passed the annual 15m (49ft) shuttle run ‘bleep’ test with “no preparation”.

“For me, the standard is too low: I think it should be higher. It’s relatively easy to pass.”

Police who failed the test will be given time to lose weight and get fitter, but “If they don’t, then we haven’t got a job for them,” Hogan-Howe said.

I think you’ve got a duty to your colleagues. If they shout for help, they want fit people to come. They don’t want somebody waddling down the road who’s never going to arrive, and when they get there they’re out of breath.

Mandatory annual fitness tests came into force in England and Wales in 2014 following a review by Chief Inspector of Constabulary Sir Tom Winsor.

The Police Federation told the BBC a number of officers have failed the tests but none have been dismissed yet.

Met chief LBC interview PA Wire / Press Association Images Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe PA Wire / Press Association Images / Press Association Images

“It’s taken too long to get the annual test, but it will start to have an increasing impact,” Hogan-Howe stated.

The BBC notes that interim findings indicate a success rate across forces in England and Wales of about 97%.

The College of Policing said that if an officer fails they should be allowed at least two retakes before disciplinary measures are considered – whereas Winsor wants the test to be more stringent.

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