May 17, 2012
A device that can send verbal warnings over a long distance or emit a beam of pain-inducing noise will be used in London during the Olympics, officials said.
Britain’s Ministry of Defense confirmed the US-made long range acoustic device, spotted attached to a landing craft on the Thames River, will be available for use in the summer games.
The LRAD 1000Xi is “an effective long range communications system that broadcasts focused highly intelligible, multi-language messages, instructions and warnings over distances up to 3,000 meters (1.8 miles) to peacefully resolve uncertain situations, a spokesman for the San Diego-based LRAD Corp. said.
The corporation denies it is a weapon and the Ministry announced it would be used “primarily in the loud hailer mode”.
While some versions of the LRAD can produce painful, deafening sound levels of 150 decibels, they can also be used to broadcast verbal warnings such as ordering crowds to disperse, officials said.
The device, which has been used by the US Army for crowd control in Iraq, has also successfully been used aboard ships to repel Somali pirates.
“As part of the military contribution to the police-led security effort to ensure a safe and secure games, a broad range of assets and equipment is being used by our armed forces,” a Ministry of Defense spokesman said.
“This includes the LRAD, which will be deployed during the Olympic Games primarily to be used in the loud hailer mode as part of the measures to achieve a maritime stop on the Thames.”
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