VDL Bus & Coach, part of VDL Group in Eindhoven, will deliver two crowd and riot control vehicles to the Mercedes-Benz dealership in Maasdijk this Monday. These are the first buses from an order for 256 crowd and riot control buses that VDL Bus & Coach is converting as a subcontractor. As regards vehicle conversion it is the largest order in VDL history according the company. 

VDL Bus & Coach has also been awarded the 10-year repair and maintenance contract. The vehicles will be delivered to the Dutch police in March 2017 through the Mercedes-Benz dealer. The first batch consists of 44 group vehicles and 11 command vehicles. The last vehicles from this first batch will be delivered in late June 2017. The final delivery of buses for the complete order will take place in 2019.

High tech sound commander

The conversion of the vehicles is being done at VDL Bus Venlo. VDL Bus Venlo has delivered many custom-made vehicles for the police over the years. This is the first time the work is being carried out in a production line, to make the conversion process for this order as efficient as possible. The compact Mercedes-Benz Sprinter is used as the base vehicle. This makes the crowd and riot control buses very agile and perfectly suited for their intended task, allowing the riot police to move through crowds of people in small groups. The order consists of group vehicles and command vehicles.

The group vehicle offers space for 9 people: the driver and the commandant in the cab, a team of 6 and possibly 1 suspect behind, and is designed with features including extra-wide side doors on either side, special windows and a cell. The command vehicle has room for the driver and commandant in the cab and 2 operators in the rear of the vehicle. Also installed in the rear of the vehicle is a conference table and various technical gadgets such as the sound commander, which lets the police address people up to 1,000 metres away.

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Author profile picture Renske Mehra is a writer. She makes understandable and interesting stories about difficult subjects.