The Spokane, Washington, Police Department will purchase 46 Ford Police Interceptor Utility Hybrid vehicles in an effort to stay ahead of supply chain crisis impacts. The purchase will cost $3.1 million, according to the city council agenda.
The department will be able to take advantage of a narrow order window in late August or early September to order enough replacement patrol cars to cover the department through at least 2023.
“The wait time for vehicles is not something we can control,” said Council Member Lori Kinnear. “We can be proactive, anticipate what we need, and order ahead. Council President Beggs and I have been advocating for years to get our police officers these vehicles that past administrations have been unable to deliver.”
The Center Square reported that Spokane Police Maj. Eric Olson recently told the city's public safety and community health committee that the last state window for ordering vehicles stayed open less than 24 hours because it was inundated with orders, with some even be canceled. That included Spokane's order for two Chevrolet diesel Tahoe trucks previously authorized by the council.
Supply chain disruptions have led to long delays for vehicle deliveries. Olson said having fewer backup vehicles available could compromise officer safety.
Spokane Police has previously reported that it preferred the Ford Police Interceptor Utility Hybrids over four Tesla Model Ys its officers tested. That's due to lack of room and some safety concerns.
Two city councilors sponsored a proposal earlier this year to have the city use American Rescue Plan funds to purchase the vehicles. Council members who vet those requests did not support that proposal, according to The Center Square.