As part of Response Policing Week, which runs from June 26th to July 2nd, we’re bringing you an insight into the role of our response police officers who work tirelessly to keep our communities safe.
Today, meet PC Dan Blades who is a response officer based in Stockton.
He joined Cleveland Police in 2014 and has been in Response for almost 10 years.
What made you want to join Cleveland Police?
From a young age I always liked the police, and everyone likes blue lights and sirens when they're younger, whether that be fire, ambulance or police and it was a particular incident when I was very young, when my mum's car got stolen from a car park in Bishop Auckland.
I remember that being my first interaction with police officers and sort of feeling reassured from those officers.
Turning up at that car park. The car wasn't there. I'm there with my mum. What do we do? And so, the first port of call was the police, and that was my first interaction with police it was really good.
They took us to the police station and that was really cool, as much as the car disappeared and it was heart breaking because my toys were in the back.
The impression from the police at that point and the fact that they helped me sort of feel reassured and feel safe. I thought actually, yeah, that's cool. That's a cool job. I want to do that.
What do you like about being a Response Officer?
I think a lot of it is your team. You have a very good camaraderie on the team and everyone's in it for the same reason.
There is also a variety of jobs you can go to, you can go from your RTCs, your collisions on the road to someone's darkest days, when there has been the death and suffering of family members and you're there to support your community.
Are there any jobs that stay with you?
People with weapons and those kind of interceptor jobs, if you like the things that the public would like to see on TV those ones you do remember.
But I think the one that hit home hardest is where there is death involved, especially when it comes to children. One particular incident that stays with me was an unfortunate child death.
Mum was inconsolable, the family were and it wasn't very nice and it does stay with you, but there are obviously things in place for police officers to discuss those things. You know having a small child myself that does, that does linger.
What message would you want to convey to the public?
Close friends, family, they understand who I am and they understand what I do and 99.9% of people, I don't think I have an issue with that.
But I think there is a misconception. I think some people see a uniform or they see a police vehicle and it's just a uniform, it's just an organisation and we're not individuals.
There is no police officer that I've ever met in my 10 years-worth of service that isn't here for the right reasons. They want to do a good job, they want to go up the job, assist the victim, assist those people in their hour of need.
There is a lot of positive work out there. You look at the interceptors and look at the policing programmes there's a lot of good work which is showcased by officers and there is support from members of the public.
You read the forums, you read the comments on social media, there is support there and that's what I try and hang on to you know that there is support for us out there.
We're there to help we will always come. You know the 999 calls, the 101 calls we will always be there.