LEXINGTON, Ky. (FOX 56) — Technological and tactical capabilities for police look very different in 2023 than they did in 2002. That’s why the Lexington Police Department wants to make some upgrades to equipment.

We see rising violence nationwide, including here in Kentucky, but the best chance of stopping it isn’t with outdated, decades-old equipment.

LPD is trying to buy a new hazardous devices unit response truck that handles commercial explosives, hazardous chemicals, and weapons of mass destruction including chemical and biological weapons.

The department’s current hazardous devices truck has been in service since 2002.

The department is seeking a $455,000 dollar grant from the Kentucky Office of Homeland Security to pay for it.

That $455,000 also includes money for two new bomb suits and one tactical x-ray generator, which upgrades the department’s response to threats remotely, making it much safer for officers.

As times and technology evolve, police need to be prepared to respond.

“We’re always going to remain at a high state of readiness,” said Commander Matthew Greathouse. “We just look and project. We don’t want issues to become issues. And if there’s a way for us to prevent issues from arising, we want to take that step. And this is one of those steps. This is a step for us to reach a or get it, purchase a new vehicle, put it in service before the old one actually is completely out of service and not serviceable any longer.”

With that said, you can have the best equipment in the world, but that equipment won’t matter in an emergency if you don’t have people who know how to use them. Which is why LPD is looking for another $89,277 from Kentucky Homeland Security to get their officers trained to be certified bomb technicians.

This training is something the department has done in the past and helps LPD attend to threats not only in Lexington-Fayette County but in surrounding communities as well.


Lexington police’s bomb squad has been in place since January 2001 and has been pushing the envelope in terms of training and response to emergencies.

But Greathouse said a lot of the current bomb technicians who joined the force more than 20 years ago, are nearing retirement. So, it’s time to bring on the next crop of specialists.

“The good thing is there’s still a drive for young individuals to be involved in specialized units and drive to find and work toward a separate, if you will, skill set within your profession,” Greathouse explains. “I think the bomb squad is in a very good state here, not only in Lexington but also in the state of Kentucky.”

In total, LPD is asking for $544,277 in funding from KY Homeland Security.

None of that money will need to come from Mayor Linda Gorton’s recently proposed budget and no matching funds are required.

The department is awaiting approval from the Lexington City Council to apply for these grants and accept them if awarded.