Edmonton police officers killing time at hospitals, report says

Edmonton police officers are spending too much time waiting around at hospitals, a report tabled at the Edmonton Police Commission suggests.

Report suggests cooling heels costs taxpayers $400,000 annually

Officers wasting time cooling heels, report says 1:52

Edmonton police officers are spending too much time waiting around at hospitals, a report tabled at the Edmonton Police Commission suggests.

Officers are required to stay with their detainee when taking them to the hospital, which can tie them up for hours — something EPS officials say they want to change.

"Those officers ... are highly trained individuals and their best use is patrolling the streets looking for bad guys," said Deputy Chief Brian Simpson.

Officers voluntarily kept track of how long they spent on hospital visits from August to November this year.

The report said that tallied to more than 1,400 hours — the equivalent of 130 shifts in the three-month period.

One solution might be to work with the ambulance service to determine which hospitals are the least busy and have officers take detainee there, Simpson said.

With files from CBC's Matthew Kupfer

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