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What do police do?

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Police officers, law enforcement officers, security officers and people in related positions may be called to any number of work environments, and perform a variety of tasks.

The main duties of a police officer, among others, are to:

  • Respond to emergency calls such as crimes, accidents/incidents/collisions, fire, violent situations, and natural disasters.
  • Patrol assigned areas to maintain public safety.
  • Enforce laws and regulations.
  • Control traffic during emergencies, road work, etc.
  • Investigate crimes and incidents.
  • Perform first aid.
  • Educate the public on crime prevention and safety.

What are some health and safety issues for police?

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Police work is among the most dangerous and requires special training. The hazards of police work include:

What are some preventive measures for police?

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  • Have extensive safety and skills training.
  • Exercise regularly to keep fit and reduce the risk of injury.
  • Wash your hands frequently and follow other protective hygiene measures to reduce the chance of infection.
  • Use personal protective equipment or other barriers for the task.
  • Follow precautions for first responders when opioids or related substances are suspected.
  • Learn safe lifting techniques.
  • Always be aware of your surroundings and on the alert for dangerous people or situations.
  • Take breaks, as appropriate, from awkward positions or repetitive physical tasks.
  • Follow a recommended shift work pattern and protect yourself from the hazards associated with shift work.
  • Follow or establish safety procedures for working alone, or for avoiding working alone wherever possible.
  • Learn about stress and post-traumatic stress, and consider a debriefing session or counselling after a critical or traumatic event.
  • Have first aid training.

Learn and follow company violence and harassment prevention policy and procedures.

What are some good general safe work practices?

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Ensure that you are trained and informed on how to avoid the various health and safety hazards of your job. Read about these:


  • Fact sheet last revised: 2021-04-22