Thatcham Research ‘Search of Vehicle’ training recognised in Border Force Outstanding Achievement Awards
Thatcham Research and Border Force Award

We are thrilled to announce that we have been nominated for a Border Force Regional Outstanding Achievement Award.

Kieron Villiers, Border Force Higher Officer said that the nomination comes “in recognition of our long-standing training partnership and the invaluable skills that Thatcham Research has given our officers over the last 25 years to secure the border and stop cross-border criminality.”

Over the years of we have delivered a broad range of training through our Border Force partnership, including 14-day technical courses for newly
recruited officers followed by refresher courses every two years to maintain competency.

The focus of these has been to ensure that Border Force teams are kept up to date with the very latest developments in vehicle technologies and
architectures, to influence best practice when vehicle searches are undertaken. This is in addition to driving awareness of new vehicle manufacturers and brands entering the market, importantly, considering technology, construction and components that present concealment opportunities.

This training is required by specialist Search of Vehicle (SOV) Officers responsible for ‘deep rummaging’ vehicles as part of their anti-smuggling
duties and to maintain the highest possible health and safety standards.

Giles Brooks, Thatcham Research business development manager, who attended the awards ceremony in Folkestone with technical trainer Andy Hutchins, said: “We are immensely proud of this partnership, and the mission that sits at its heart to keep Border Force technicians safe while also providing dedicated intelligence to support rigorous and exhaustive vehicle searches.

“Searching modern vehicles is dangerous work, and it gives our teams great satisfaction to know that they are providing key skills to our Border
Force colleagues. This ranges from High Voltage battery isolation, to ensuring that they have the necessary awareness of airbag deployment risk, refrigerant handling requirements when searching air conditioning systems, and safe practices in addressing traditional fuel systems.

“This makes this award nomination all the more satisfying and significant for our excellent technical training teams, and we would like to sincerely thank the Border Force for this recognition.”

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