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Assault rifle used by UK counterterrorism police reviewed after tests revealed it didn’t shoot straight in warm weather

By DPF Admin27th April 2015August 6th, 2019Area Updates, Latest News, Northern Updates, Southern Updates

An assault rifle used by UK counterterrorism police is under urgent review after tests revealed it did not shoot straight in warm weather.

The G36 assault rifle, used by forces across the country, became seriously inaccurate in hot conditions, a report in Germany has found.

The weapon, with around 5,600 in operation in the UK, was susceptible to humid weather of around 30 degrees, or temperature rises after repeated firing, the dossier concluded.

The German army discovered the weapon missed its targets in these conditions and described the firearm as 'not fit for purpose.'

Police here use 2,000-3,000 G36C rifles, a version with a shorter barrel than the standard issue weapon, which are deployed by armed cops when extra firepower is needed instead of the usual 9mm pistols.

The Home Office's Centre for Applied Science and Technology (CAST) will now carry out a review of the gun as the German defence ministry said it had 'no future.'

Tonight the National Police Chiefs' Council(NPCC) told the Mirror the gun had not been withdrawn and would currently remain in use by armed officers on our streets.

A spokeswoman said there was 'insufficient evidence' to back up decommissioning the G36C rifle and described the development as 'still at a very early stage.'

She added: “We are looking to see if more testing needs to be done.”

Deputy Chief Constable Simon Chesterman, the spokesman on armed policing at the NPCC, said: “The reliability of any weaponry that the police service uses is of paramount importance.

“As a result we will refer the matter to Cast and ask them to consider the recent findings in Germany and advise us accordingly.”

Gun makers Heckler & Koch dispute the German Army's findings and say their product, used by British special forces in Iraq, has no problems.

The tests reportedly showed bullets missing their mark by more than 50cm at a range of 200 metres, becoming wayward after 60 rounds of ammunition.

German media said the G36Cs missed by up to six metres when fired a distance of 500 metres.

The Civil Nuclear Constabulary, which guards the UK's nuclear power plants, also has 600 G36C rifles.

Heckler & Koch said: “The G36 has been in use for nearly 20 years and has proven itself in more than 35 countries worldwide in numerous operations.

“We are dismayed by the statements issued by the {German} Ministry of Defence with regard to the G36 rifle.”

A Home Office spokesman said they had received the report and a review would now take place by CAST.

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