Nine in ten police officers believe that there are not enough of them to manage the demands faced by their team or unit.
The figures from the Federation of England and Wales (PFEW) as it publishes stark findings from its latest Demand, Capacity and Welfare Survey.
There is an increase in lone working – new research reveals that 76.1% of respondents from relevant frontline roles indicated that they are often or always single-crewed.
Almost every police officer has been exposed to at least one traumatic experience in their career, with 61.7% saying they had experienced at least one of these types of incident in the last 12 months
79% of officers say they have felt feelings of stress and anxiety within the previous 12 months with 94% of those saying these difficulties were caused or made worse by their job while 43.9% of respondents reported that they viewed their job as very or extremely stressful.
PFEW’s National Vice-Chair Ché Donald, said: “When officers work alone they are undoubtedly exposed to increased risk – for them and the public, not to mention the detrimental effect on their overall health and wellbeing. It’s quite simple – policing is dangerous in every sense, and whilst single-crewing may work for some forces and certain types of enquiries, it is not acceptable the majority of the time.
“Forces are having their hands forced as they struggle to meet the increased demands placed on them, but this false economy of single-crewing merely creates the illusion of public safety. Quite simply this is not sustainable and officers are suffering.”