Chicago Police DepartmentUniform and Property U04-02-03
Personal Oleoresin Capsicum (OC) Devices
Issue Date:13 January 2016Effective Date:13 January 2016
Rescinds:14 June 2012 Version
Index Category:Uniform and Personal Equipment
  • A.This directive outlines policy relative to OC devices.
  • B.Satisfies CALEA Law Enforcement Standard Chapter 1.
  • A.While in the performance of their field duties, all sworn members will carry the prescribed personal OC device in an approved device holder.
  • B.The personal OC device and device holder will conform to the specifications referenced in the uniform specification titled "Personal OC Chemical Device and Holder."
  • C.The prescribed personal OC device will use a nonflammable propellant and contain a ten percent solution of oleoresin capsicum (pepper agent) only. The rating will not exceed 500,000 Scoville Heat Units.
    All personal OC devices are under pressure and should be used with extreme caution.
  • D.Members are not approved to carry or use any type of personal OC device different from that which is prescribed.
    Members will be trained on the safe handling and use of the personal OC device and how it pertains to Department Use of Force Guidelines.
  • E.The chief of each bureau and the commanding officer of exempt rank for each unit within the Office of the Superintendent will issue written directives which designate, by duty assignment, those members under their command who are not required to carry a personal OC device.
  • F.Sworn members who are not required to carry a personal OC device will have it readily available during duty hours.
  • G.A personal OC device is approved for use by sworn members consistent with the Department directive entitled “Force Options."
  • H.This equipment is classified as the member’s personal equipment, and each member is responsible for the care and maintenance of these items.
  • I.A member who discharges a personal OC device will receive a replacement device from the station supervisor. Should this item become lost, stolen, damaged, or expired, the individual member will be responsible for its replacement.
  • J.Caution should be exercised when discharging a personal OC device in enclosed areas or in the presence of infant children or elderly persons.
  • K.The chemical agent OC does not require any special decontamination procedure other than flushing with cool water and normal ventilation.
  • L.After using a personal OC device on an individual, the member will:
    • 1.if possible, relocate the individual(s) to an area of uncontaminated air and face the subject(s) into the wind.
    • 2.provide an opportunity for the subject(s) to eliminate the effects of the OC by flushing the affected areas with cool water. This should take place as soon as feasible, to the extent that the subject can be controlled without possible injury to himself or others.
      Subjects wearing contact lenses should remove them, if possible, before flushing the eyes with water.
    • 3.advise the subject to refrain from rubbing the affected area(s) or using creams, ointments, commercial eye washes, or bandages.
  • M.If it is practical, avoid transporting an individual who is wet with OC. Transporting a subject when dry will minimize the possibility of the officer becoming contaminated.
  • N.Under normal circumstances all symptoms of exposure to OC should disappear within 30 to 45 minutes. If symptoms persist, the subject will be transported for medical attention in accordance with the Department directive entitled “Processing Persons Under Department Control.”
  • O.Clothing which becomes contaminated with OC can be laundered in the usual manner without fear of contaminating other laundry.
  • P.Special equipment or a special washing process is not required to decontaminate an enclosed area. The opening of doors and windows will normally result in the removal of OC from the environment within 45 minutes.
  • Q.Sworn Member Responsibilities
    A sworn member discharging a personal OC device will:
  • R.District Commander Responsibilities
    The district commander of the district of occurrence will:
    • 1.ensure that an individual is designated to order replacement canisters from the Equipment and Supply Section, General Support Divis.
    • 2.establish a secure area in the district for the storage of replacement canisters and ensure that the replacement canisters are available to the station supervisor on each watch.
(Items indicated by italics/double underline were added or revised.)
John J. Escalante
Interim Superintendent of Police
15-108 TSS