Study: Tasers are safe to use

October 8, 2007

U.S. scientists examining the safety of Tasers used by some law enforcement officers have found the devices are safe, causing few serious injuries.

The study, led by Dr. William Bozeman of the Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center, is believed the first large, independent study of injuries associated with Tasers -- weapons that incapacitate people through an electrical current delivered by shooting wires into the body.

In a review of nearly 1,000 cases, 99.7 percent of those subjected to Taser use had mild injuries, such as scrapes and bruises, or none at all, Bozeman said. Only three subjects suffered injuries severe enough to need hospital admission.

Two other subjects died after being shot by a Taser, but autopsy reports indicated neither death was related to the use of a Taser.

Bozeman presented the study Monday in Seattle during the American College of Emergency Physicians' Research Forum. Earlier partial results involving 597 cases were published in the September issue of the journal Annals of Emergency Medicine.

Copyright 2007 by United Press International

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