A tribute to ‘Boaty’; Peter Boatman, QPM. 1953 – 2010

By Bill Fox – Executive Chairman – Maybo

Friday saw the loss of a man who did so much to promote the personal safety of workers and the public in potentially violent encounters. Peter is best known for his contribution to Officer Safety, for which he was awarded the Queens Police Medal. His pioneering work however extended across many work sectors and he was respected as a leader in his field in North America and Europe.

I had the pleasure of working with Peter on Officer Safety and then at Maybo, before the Taser project demanded his full time commitment. He worked incredibly hard and always with a desire to make a positive difference, he was entirely deserving of the success he achieved as an expert in his field and in business.

Despite his workload and the pressures of the Raoul Moat incident Peter still took time to contribute to employer guidance being launched this month on the use of physical intervention by security operatives. This is so typical of Peter, always willing to help anyone who asked for advice and ever reliable and enthusiastic.

 It was not just staff safety that Peter addressed, he made a real difference to public safety working with Dr. Tony Bleetman and others to raise awareness of the vulnerability of individuals being restrained. Peter led the introduction of the Taser as a non lethal force option and this has saved the lives of many individuals, some of whom would have been shot prior to Taser being issued.

I do not know the details of the alleged licence infringements in regard the issue of Taser’s in the Raoul Moat incident, but one thing is for sure, Peter Boatman would have had the best interests of everyone involved in mind. Peter set very high personal and professional standards and perhaps the recent criticism was more than this proud man could bear. There are those that do and those that criticise and Peter like all pioneers of change has had his share of battles, but he always bounced back and this is why we have been so shocked by the news of his passing. A great loss.

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