Singapore Police Force

Coordinates: 1°19′27.56″N 103°50′43.24″E / 1.3243222°N 103.8453444°E / 1.3243222; 103.8453444

Singapore Police Force
Pasukan Polis Singapura
சிங்கப்பூர் காவல் துறை
Abbreviation SPF

Logo of the Singapore Police Force
"Setia dan Bakti"[1] (Malay)
"Loyalty and Service"
Agency overview
Legal personality Governmental: Government agency
Jurisdictional structure
National agency Singapore
General nature
Operational structure
Sworn members 41,599
Commissioner of Police responsible Hoong Wee Teck
Parent agency Ministry of Home Affairs
Staff Departments
Specialist & Line units
NPCs/NPPs 97
Police boats 61

The Singapore Police Force (Abbreviation: SPF; Malay: Pasukan Polis Singapura; Chinese: 新加坡警察部队; Tamil: சிங்கப்பூர் காவல் துறை) is the Republic's main police agency tasked with maintaining law and order in the island city-state.[2] Formerly known as the Republic of Singapore Police (RSP; Malay: Polis Repablik Singapura), it has grown from an 11-man organisation to a 38,587 strong force. Singapore has been ranked consistently in the top five positions in the Global Competitiveness Report in terms of its reliability of police services.[3][4][5]

The organisational structure of the SPF is split between the staff and line functions, roughly modelled after the military. There are currently 14 staff departments, 3 specialist staff departments and 15 specialist and line units (including 6 Land Divisions). The headquarters is located in a block at New Phoenix Park in Novena, adjacent to a twin block occupied by the Ministry of Home Affairs.[6]

Colonial History

The Singapore Police Force has a heritage almost as old as that of modern Singapore, having been formed in 1819[7] with a skeleton force of 11 men under the command of Francis James Bernard, son-in-law of William Farquhar, and kept in operation with a monthly budget of $300. Manpower constraints meant that the men had to perform a wide range of roles, and required the help of headmen amongst the various ethnic communities to maintain orderliness on the streets, all the more possible as the communities lived in segregated areas around the city.

This partnership with the community was in line with Sir Stamford Raffles' vision of a thriving colony largely self-regulated by local social structures, with the British masters administrating it via indirect rule. The large influx of migrants from China, however, began to test this system when the hands-off approach by the British allowed secret societies in Singapore to thrive. Although originally formed with legal intentions of community bonding and the provision of assistance to fellow migrants, these societies gradually became influential, competitive, and increasingly engaged in illegal activity including monetary extortion from the masses, the operation of gambling dens, and the smuggling of illegal goods on top of more legal commercial operations to meet their financial needs.

Competition gradually heated up between large rival factions, such as that between the larger Ghee Hin Kongsi, the Ghee Hock Kongsi and the Hai San Kongsi. Murders, mass riots, kidnappings, arson and other serious crimes became commonplace in the next four decades since the colony's founding. Faced with violent acts of crime which may involve thousands, such as the funeral riots of 1846 involving 9,000 members from the Ghee Hin and Ghee Hock secret societies, the police force was woefully incapable of bringing the situation under control, and often had to call in the army for assistance. The escalating number of serious crimes prompted the need for stronger legislation to deter would-be criminals. Singapore's first executions were thus held in the wake of the first criminal session in June 1828, when a Chinese and Indian were found guilty and convicted for murder.

Headed by Europeans and predominantly staffed by Malay and Indian officers, the force had little Chinese representation as the military and policing professionals were traditionally shunned by the Chinese community, which therefore impaired policing efforts amongst the large Chinese populace. In 1843, the force comprised a sitting magistrate doubling up as a superintendent, three European constables and an assistant native constable, 14 officers and 110 policemen. With a total strength of no more than 150 men, the police was compelled to avoid direct intervention in these mass acts of violence, else risking almost total annihilation.

A repeat of this scenario occurred in 1851, when lingering displeasure against Roman Catholic ethnic Chinese erupted into major rioting leaving over 500 Chinese dead. The army was called in again, although it involved having to induct Indian convicts into military service almost overnight. In 1854, twelve consecutive days of violence sparked by a dispute between the Hokkiens and Teochews disrupted trade. This particular incident led to the formation of the military's Singapore Rifle Corps on 8 July 1854, the earliest predecessor of the Singapore Armed Forces' People's Defence Force today.

Criminal violence was not merely in the domain of the ethnic Chinese, however. Rivalries between Malay princes and communities also often result in acts of violence, which prompted the passing of Singapore's first arms law in March 1823 restricting the right to bear arms to 24 of the Malay Sultan's followers. Nearly two centuries later, these anti-arms laws continue to be strictly enforced, resulting in a society relatively free from firearms-related criminal offences.[8]

Modern Day

Jurong Police Division Headquarters at Jurong West Avenue 5, note the Singapore Police Force crest prominently displayed.

Crime rates in Singapore are consistently low.[9]

Organisational structure

Police Headquarters

Commissioner of PoliceCommissioner of PoliceCP Hoong Wee TeckNew Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road
Deputy Commissioner of Police (Policy)Deputy Commissioner of PoliceDC(P) Lim Kok ThaiNew Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road
Deputy Commissioner of Police (Investigations & Intelligence)Deputy Commissioner of PoliceDC(I&I) Tan Chye HeePolice Cantonment Complex, 391 New Bridge Road Block C
Deputy Commissioner of Police (Operations)Deputy Commissioner of PoliceDC(Ops) Lau Peet MengNew Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road
Quality Service ManagerAssistant CommissionerACOh Lee Meng MariaNew Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road

Staff departments

Administration and Finance DepartmentA&FDAC Lee Chwee HuatNew Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road
Inspectorate and Compliance OfficeInCoAC Lee Chin EkNew Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road
Internal Affairs OfficeIAOAC Paramjit SinghNew Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road
International Cooperation DepartmentICDDAC Chua Chee WaiNew Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road
Manpower DepartmentMPDSAC Tan Hung HooiNew Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road
Operations DepartmentOPSDC Lau Peet MengNew Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road
Planning and Organisation DepartmentP&OSAC Teo Chun ChingNew Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road
Police Licensing and Regulatory DepartmentPLRDDAC Lu Yeow LimPolice Cantonment Complex, 391 New Bridge Road Block D
Police Logistics DepartmentPLDSAC Cheang Keng KeongNew Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road
Police National Service DepartmentPNSDAC Lee Chin Ek170 Still Road
Public Affairs DepartmentPADAC Wilson Lim Hock LeeNew Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road
Police Technology DepartmentPTD Tay Yeow KoonNew Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road
Service Delivery DepartmentSDDAC Oh Lee Meng MariaNew Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road
Volunteer Special ConstabularyVSCDAC Chua Chuan SengPolice Cantonment Complex, 391 New Bridge Road Block C

Specialist staff departments

Commercial Affairs DepartmentCAD David Chew Siong TaiPolice Cantonment Complex, 391 New Bridge Road Block D
Criminal Investigation DepartmentCIDDC Tan Chye HeePolice Cantonment Complex, 391 New Bridge Road Block C
Police Intelligence DepartmentPID SAC Florence ChuaNew Phoenix Park, 28 Irrawaddy Road

Specialist & Land units

Ang Mo Kio Police Division'F' DivisionAC Lian Ghim Hua51 Ang Mo Kio Avenue 9
Bedok Police Division'G' DivisionAC Tan Tin Wee30 Bedok North Road
Central Police Division'A' DivisionDAC Arthur LawPolice Cantonment Complex, 391 New Bridge Road Block A
Clementi Police Division'D' DivisionAC Gerald Lim20 Clementi Avenue 5
Jurong Police Division'J' DivisionDAC Koh Wei Keong2 Jurong West Avenue 5
Tanglin Police Division'E' DivisionDAC Tan Chia Han21 Kampong Java Road
Airport Police DivisionAPAC Cheong Chee Ming35 Airport Boulevard
Gurkha ContingentGCAC Ross FormanMount Vernon Camp, 9 Vernon Park
Home Team School of Criminal InvestigationHTSCISAC Loy Chye MengHome Team Academy, 501 Old Choa Chu Kang Road
Police Coast GuardPCGSAC Hsu Sin Yun11 Brani Way
Public Transport Security CommandTransComDAC Lee Su Peng 132 Paya Lebar Road (Old Geylang Police Station, Geylang NPC)
Protective Security CommandProComAC Manimaran Pushpanatan 300 Ulu Pandan Rd
Security CommandSecComAC Lim Chee Pheng2 Lorong 4 Toa Payoh (Old Toa Payoh Police Station)
Special Operations CommandSOCAC David Scott ArulQueensway Base
Traffic Police DepartmentTPAC Sam Tee Chong Fui10 Ubi Avenue 3
Training CommandTRACOMSAC Loy Chye MengHome Team Academy, 501 Old Choa Chu Kang Road

The divisions are also named after NATO phonetic alphabet. These include:

^ Now defunct units


The Singapore Police Force receives the highest budget allocation annually as compared to the various departments of the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), typically accounting for about 50% of its annual budget. For the fiscal year of 2013 (for the year beginning 1 April 2013), S$3.89 billion was budgeted to the MHA, of which 47.8%, or S$1.86 billion was allocated for the Police Programme. Actual expenses in the 2013 fiscal year was S$2.04 billion, of which S$1.88 billion was spent on operating expenditure (against the budgeted S$1.79 billion) and S$159.1 million on development expenditure (budgeted at $71.83 million).[10] Manpower costs amounting to S$1.16 billion continue to dominate the SPF's expenditure, accounting for 61.7% of its operating expenditure and 56.9% of total expenditure in FY2013.[10]

Fiscal YearOperating ExpenditureDevelopment ExpenditureTotal Expenditure
2010 S$951.66 S$653.08 S$1,604.74 S$1,497.70 S$76.01 S$87.53 S$1,680.75 S$1,585.24
2011 S$930.31 S$658.73 S$1,589.04 S$1,546.79 S$54.69 S$70.81 S$1,643.74 S$1,617.60
2012 S$1,065.05 S$695.73 S$1,760.79 S$1,606.93 S$72.08 S$93.46 S$1,832.86 S$1,700.39
2013 S$1,161.41 S$721.74 S$1,883.15 S$1,787.64 S$159.10 S$71.83 S$2,042.25 S$1,859.47
2014 S$1,369.52 (est) S$804.20 (est) S$2,172.72 (est) S$1,932.98 S$269.41 (est) S$205.49 S$2,442.13 (est) S$2,138.47
2015 S$2,262.48 S$10.93 S$2,473.40

The latest budget for fiscal year 2015, S$2.47 billion was allocated to the Police Programme,[10] or 49.5% of MHA's total budget of S$5 billion (the Ministry of Defence, in comparison, received a S$13.12 billion budget allocation).[11] This includes S$2.26 billion for Operating Expenditure and $210.93 million for Development Expenditure. The main Development Expenditures expected in FY2015 included the construction of new buildings such as the Woodlands Police Divisional HQ as well as the acquisition of new patrol craft for the Police Coast Guard and the installation of police cameras at more HDB blocks and multi-storey car parks.[12]


Police National Service officers contribute to security coverage requirements at the National Day Parade, 2004. Shown left is a full-time serviceman, and he is accompanied at right by a Police National Serviceman (reservist), both in the current SPF uniform.

As of 31 March 2014, the total strength of the force stands at 41,599, of which 15,031 are full-time staff.[13] Manpower trends in recent years are as follows:

Year endedRegularsCiviliansPNSFPNSmenVSCTotal
31 March 20077,8261,2063,46420,8521,04934,397
31 March 20128,4691,2624,722unknown1,146unknown
31 March 20138,6171,4234,85324,2481,21240,353
31 March 20148,7831,5444,70425,4921,07641,599


Regulars, or uniformed, full-time officers, constitute about 20% of the police's total workforce and number approximately 8,000 in strength. Basic entry requirements for police officers include normal fitness levels, good eyesight, and at least five passes in the GCE Ordinary level or a NITEC from the Institute of Technical Education, although those with lower qualifications may still be considered.[14] Those joining the senior police officers require a basic degree from a recognised university.[15] Alternatively, police officers from the junior ranks may also be considered for promotion into the senior ranks.[16] Officers serving in the force as national servicemen are also regularly considered for absorption into the regular scheme. Basic training for all officers are conducted at the Home Team Academy, under the purview of the Police Training Command. It takes about six months[17] and nine months[18] to train a new police officer and senior police officer respectively.

As is the case with many other civil service positions in Singapore, the salaries of police officers are reviewed in accordance to market rates. Salaries are kept competitive as part of anti-corruption measures. Gross starting salaries for police officers may range from S$1,820 to S$2,480,[19] and that of senior police officers from S$3,400 to S$4,770,[20] depending on entry qualifications, relevant/useful work experiences and National Service.

Police officers commence their careers as Sergeants (Full GCE 'A' level or Diploma holders) or Corporals (other qualifications),[19] while senior police officers start as either Assistant Superintendents of Police (2nd Upper Honours Degree and above) or Inspectors (2nd Lower Honours degree and lower). Reviews of an officer's performance for promotion consideration are conducted annually. Interviews conducted for promotion to certain ranks were phased out since 1995. It takes approximately five years for a police officer to be promoted to the next rank, although the system allows for accelerated promotion for outstanding officers.

While joining the force as a career is generally considered a respectable decision in contemporary Singapore, support from the ethnic Malay community has been traditionally stronger due to less social stigma attached to the profession. Traditionally, Chinese culture has eschewed careers in uniformed positions, resulting in a force dominated by non-Chinese officers for most of the force's early history. National servicemen also contribute a higher proportion of ethnic Malays in the force. The current ethnic profile of the force continues to have a significantly higher proportion of ethnic minorities compared to the national ethnic profile, although such an outcome is related to operational demands: police resources are typically deployed with a diverse ethnic mix to decrease communication problems while attending to incidents in ethnically-diverse Singapore.

Competition in the employment market, usually heating up during economic boom times, occasionally depressed the number of police recruits as well as its existing ranks. A series of major incidents in 2008 affecting agencies of the Home Affairs Ministry has led to the ministry conducting a study which concluded that there is a shortage of officers, resulting in officers being "overstretched, strained and overstressed". In the police force, it was admitted that the recruitment and retention of non-graduate police officers has been "adversely affected by the tighter labour market", with resignation rates increasing by 50% between 2004 and 2007. Recruitment figures, while remaining relatively stable, has been unable to "address the higher demands placed on the Force. Various measures were thus taken in response, including an increase in starting salaries, sign-on bonuses for senior police officers, and retention bonuses of up to S$30,000 for non-graduate police officers in a bid to encourage them to stay for at least eight years, over the five years where many leave at the end of their service bonds.

Police national servicemen

While national service was introduced in 1967 in Singapore, it was solely geared towards the building up of the Singapore Armed Forces. There was little urgency in the police force to increase its manpower strength until the Laju incident in 1974 demonstrated the need for additional trained reserve officers who can be called up at short notice in the event of an emergency. National service was thus extended to the Singapore Police Force in 1975, with the primary aim of guarding key installations and to act as a reserve unit. Subsequent expansion of the scheme, changing security needs, and the trend in outsourcing installation protection (such as to the Auxiliary Police Forces) has expanded their role to more functions, which may range from administration, investigation to front-line policing alongside their regular counterparts.


Formed in 1946, The Volunteer Special Constabulary (VSC) is an important component of the Singapore Police Force, contributing more than fifty years of volunteer service to the nation.[21]

The VSC is composed of volunteers from all walks of life in Singapore, from businessmen to blue-collar executives to even bus captains, bonded with the same aspiration to serve the nation by complementing the Singapore Police Force. They are vested with equal powers of a police officer to enforce law and order in Singapore. VSC Officers don the same police uniform and patrol the streets, participate in anti-drug operations and sometimes even high-speed sea chases.

Previously headquartered at the Eu Tong Sen Street Police Station and Toa Payoh Police Station, it relocated to the new Police Cantonment Complex in year 2000.

Civilian staff

Civilian staff in the Police Force are deployed in areas such as technology, logistics, human resource and administrative and finance services as well as investigation, planning and intelligence.[22] The civilian staff schemes falls under the general civil service schemes managed by the Public Service Division. These schemes include:

The civilisation of non-core police functions have accelerated over the years in order to free up additional manpower for redeployment into Police Divisions. Other changes include the deployment of contract staff through organisations such as Ministry of Finance's for administrative staff and partners such as Singapore Technologies and Cyber Security Agency for technical support.

Staff welfare


Dark blue (or more accurately Dacron blue) is the organisational colour of the Singapore Police Force, and has remained so continuously since 1969, although the first police uniforms introduced in 1856 were also in the same colour.

On 1 July 1969, dacron blue made a comeback to the uniform with a force-wide change away from khaki overnight, in part to coincide with Singapore's 150th anniversary since its founding in 1819. The new uniform comprises a dark blue peak cap, shirt, trousers, black belt, shoes and socks, and coded whistle lanyard in blue and white. 3 large and 4 small metal buttons, metal collar badges, and a metal cap badge are affixed, and a black plastic name tag completes the uniform. Metallic ranks, if any, are fixed to the sleeve or on the shoulders for senior officers. The lanyard was changed to a metal chain in 1972, and in 1985, the material of the uniform was changed from 75% polyester 25% cotton to 100% polyester for ease of daily maintenance.

Derivatives of the standard blue uniform (collectively called the no.3 uniform) was adopted for specialised forces and for all officers in various occasions which calls for more formal or casual attire. The Traffic Police Department was amongst the few to move away from the all-blue attire, adopting a short-sleeved white tunic, dark blue breeches, a black leather Sam Browne belt, and riding boots for its officers performing mobile squad duties. A white crash helmet is worn when on the move, while a new dark blue jockey cap with chequered white and dark blue patterns around its circumference is worn when convenient while performing static duty. Members of the Vigilante Corps are also attired by a white short-sleeved top similar in design to the dark blue version for normal officers, gold-coloured buttons and badges, and a dark blue beret in place of the peak cap.

Combat uniforms has also been adopted for specialist units such as those from the Special Operations Command and the Police Coast Guard (PCG), collectively known as the No.4 uniforms. These involve the replacement of metal buttons with sewn-on plastic ones, the avoidance of all other metallic accruements which are deemed potentially hazardous to the officer or to others and the use of long-sleeved shirts.

There was no major change to the uniform since then, except for the adoption of embroidered shoulder ranks and badges for all ranks in the 1990s. Other changes are less distinct, such as the upgrading of shoes used, the change of the belt material and belt buckle to one including the police crest, and the replacement of the peak cap with a baseball cap for NPC officers on frontline duty.

In the past, the police were using their standard issued drill boots for their daily duties; however, using of the drill boots for daily duties such as patrols and chasing after suspects proved impractical as they were severely uncomfortable, causing blisters, or worse, causing the officer to be injured. In 2012, the police trialed the Magnum Stealth Force 6.0 and 8.0, subsequently they became the standard issue for their officers. While the Special Operations Command were previously using the traditional full leather combat boot, the force also rolled out the Magnum Spider 8.1 SZ for their troopers.

In end-2015, the police (and Home Team) rolled out the Frontier 8" Tactical Boot as the replacement for the Magnum Stealth Forces. The newer boots have the same exact features of the Magnum Stealth Force 8.0. Despite criticisms of the Frontier brand from servicemen from the Singapore Army (which has a different design), the 8" Tactical Boots features a vibram out-sole, thicker side cushioning, and slightly more ventilation, which is very comfortable, although the insole of the boot is slightly thinner as compared to the Magnum Stealth Forces, which can be replaced.

In 2008 - 2009, the black engraved plastic nametags was changed to the black epoxy coated nametags with the Home Team badge on the left. The name-tags with a safety-pinned backing were a safety hazard when struggling with suspects, progressively, the backing name-tags were fitted with velcro for ease of fitting, and safety. The previous black engraved plastic nametags is still in use by the National Police Cadet Corps. All officers under the Home Team are issued with these epoxy nametags.


A standard rank structure is used throughout the police force, although some ranks may be unique to specific organisations. These ranks are denoted where applicable in the following list, which lists them in ascending seniority:

Police officers

The rank of Corporal was abolished in 1972, but reinstated in 1976. In 1997, all ranks were shifted from the sleeves to the epaulettes, except for the Gurkha Contingent. Also in the same year, the Station Inspector rank was changed from collar pips to epaulettes with a new design similar to that of the SAF Warrant Officers, and the rank of Senior Station Inspector was introduced. In 1998, the Senior Station Inspector (2) rank was introduced, and changes were made to the SI, SSI, and SSI(2) rank designs. The rank of Lance Corporal was abolished in 2002. The 2006, the Gurkha Contingent adopted embroidered ranks as part of an overhaul of its combat dress, but are worn on the right front pocket. There was a major rank overhaul in 2016 with the removal of the ranks of CPL, SSGT, SSI and SSI(2), as well as the removal of the distinction between "Police Officers" and "Senior Police Officers" in what is now called a "unified police scheme".[23]

Special ConstableSCTSC-SC---
Station InspectorSI-SI-SI (NS)SI (V)SI
Senior Station InspectorSSI-SSI-SSI (NS)SSI (V)-
Senior Station Inspector (2)SSI (2)-SSI (2)-SSI(2) (NS)SSI(2)(V)-
Assistant SuperintendentASPP/ASPASPASP(NS)ASP (V)ASP
Deputy SuperintendentDSP-DSP-DSP(NS)DSP (V)DSP
Deputy Assistant CommissionerDAC-DAC-DAC(NS)DAC (V)DAC
Assistant CommissionerAC-AC--AC(V)AC
Senior Assistant CommissionerSAC-SAC----
Deputy Commissioner of PoliceDCP/DC-DCP----
Commissioner of PoliceCP-CP----


Police officers in the various divisions are armed when conducting regular uniformed patrols and plainclothes duties. Officers from different units are issued with different weapons.

The standard layout of a regular right handed officer's duty belt/ops kit consists of the followings in a clockwise direction;

The 5-shot .38 Taurus Model 85 with 3 inch barrel featuring a laser sight by Crimson Trace is the standard issued sidearm of the Singapore Police Force with 10 rounds of ammunition. For less-than-lethal option, most policemen are issued a Monadnock PR-21 side handle baton to enhance their defensive capabilities.

Expandable batons are used by some units such as Security Command and the Sabre Red pepper spray canisters are exclusively equipped to the officers of Police Coast Guard and Police Tactical Unit. A pair of handcuffs is issued to the officers as restrains.

The Taser X26 stun gun is part of the officer equipment, which provides another non-lethal means of subduing suspects. Despite some safety concerns due to incidents experienced by foreign police forces, the weapon was deemed suitable for use by trained personnel, and was rolled out across other NPCs.

Heckler & Koch USP pistols are known to be used by the Special Operations Command, Police Tactical Unit, Criminal Investigation Department and Security Command. Officers of Police Coast Guard's Special Task Squadron are issued with Glock 19 semi-automatic pistol and Special Tactics and Rescue (STAR) acquired the Swiss-made Sphinx 3000 pistol, replacing the previous used Glock pistols.

Addition to the use of the handguns, Singapore Police Force also uses the Heckler & Koch MP5 submachine gun and the Remington 870 shotgun while specialised weapons are issued to the STAR and KINS units, such as the Sphinx 3000, G36C, M4S1, M16S1, SIG-522, G22, SAR-21 rifles, MATADOR anti-armor weapon system and a variegated arsenal of sniper rifles.


The primary communication tool carried by each officer is through a common digital radio set used by Home Team organizations. In the first half of the 21st century, this was provided by Matra Nortel Communications/EADS based on TETRAPOL technology. In 2013, a contract was awarded to Motorola Communications for a replacement communication network (MCN2) using TETRA technology with the first units being deployed in 2015. Whereas for secondary communication, officers are given the option to utilise the Mobile Data Terminal (MDT) or their personal issued Personal Digital Assistant, also known as Cubicon 2 in which real time information can be communicated between the officer and command centre or ops room.

Strict enforcement of anti-arm laws which are in existence in Singapore since 1823 has resulted in a relatively disarmed society, where firearms-related crimes are rare. It is therefore not an operational requirement for police officers to wear bullet resistant vests when conducting normal policing duties. However, vests, helmets, and shields are carried in police vehicles and stocked in police establishments and can be rapidly utilised should the situation require it. In addition, chemical protection equipment such as suit, gloves, boots and NBC masks etc. are readily available to be drawn from the maintenance stores. Special units such as the KINS unit are known for utilising the skeletal battle order vest as a direct alternative to the ops kit belt for as they are issued with firearm magazines while on duty. From 2004, new multi-purpose vests were introduced which offer officers protection against most handgun fire, knife thrusts, as well as doubling up as a buoyancy vest should officers fall into deep water.


Land division officers typically respond to calls in rapid-deployment vehicles known as the Fast Response Car (FRC). The SPF have been staunch users of Japanese-made saloon cars since the 1980s for patrol duties, with the mainstay models in use being the various generations of the Mitsubishi Lancers, Mazda 323s and Toyota Corollas. At the turn of the century they have also included Nissan Sunnys, Subaru Impreza 1.6 TS sedans (not to be confused with the Subaru Impreza WRX used by the Traffic Police) in 2012 the traffic police have included the Volvo S80 T5.

All FRCs carry a large array of equipment to allow officers to conduct normal policing duties and basic investigative work which officers are expected to perform with the implementation of the Neighbourhood Police Centre (NPC) system. A typical FRC vehicle may therefore stock equipment for the force-opening of locked doors, conducting roadblocks, fingerprint collection, and the provision of first aid. On top of these, chemical agent protection equipment, police shields and bulletproof vests are also carried for the officer's protection.

In 2002, the Enhanced Patrol Vehicle Project was unveiled at the SPF's annual workplan seminar to highlight the need for off-road capability. The Volvo V70 AWD XC, Mitsubishi Space Wagon and Mitsubishi Chariot underwent evaluation in various NPCs. Eventually, all NPCs were to have at least three of such vehicles, but the project was met with skepticism by some of the public, stating that the police need not use such "luxurious vehicles" for police patrols. In 2004, the new Fast Response Vehicle (FRV) was introduced, consisting of cheaper modified Toyota Hi-Lux sport utility vehicles. These vehicles utilise diesel-power which provide greater ability to endure high usage on the roads over extensive periods of time. Their bigger storage space also allows for easier storage and retrieval of equipment.

Other vehicles typically used in NPCs include the scooters and vans. Bicycles, although currently less seen, are still used by land division officers belonging to the Community Policing Unit (CPU) occasionally, particularly when conducting routine patrols in large, sprawling private housing estates. At NDP 2007, the Singapore Police Force unveiled a Tenix S600 APC (Armored Personnel Carrier) had been purchased for its operations for the Special Operations Command and in NDP 2015, the Achleitner HMV Survivor and the Gurkha MPV by Terradyne Armored Vehicles Inc was unveiled.

For weaponry, equipment and vehicles of the various specialist forces, please see their respective pages for details.

Auxiliary Police Forces

A Certis CISCO auxiliary police officer stands guard beside an armoured truck at Change Alley, Singapore.

In Singapore, auxiliary police officers are security police appointed under Section 92(1) or (2) of the Police Force Act 2004 and are vested with all the power, protection and immunities of a Police Officer of corresponding rank and are licensed to carry firearms when carrying out their duties.

These armed auxiliary police officers (APO) are full-time paid employees of their respective companies, and are not directly affiliated to the Singapore Police Force. They are appointed as auxiliary police officers only after attending and passing a residential course, the curriculum of which is set by the Security Industry Regulatory Dept. of the Singapore Police Force. Each APO is issued with a warrant card signed by the Commissioner Of Police of the Singapore Police Force.

There were also other auxiliary police forces in Singapore in the early years such as PSA Police, and Bukom Auxiliary Police. These APF were granted licences and powers under the Police Force Act to operate only in restricted geographical areas e.g. in the ports or airports or Pulau Bukom Island.

The Singapore Police Force (SPF) established the Security Industry Regulatory Department in 2004 to regulate the security industry.

More recently, due to the shortage of officers from the SPF the role of auxiliary police forces have been expanded to enforcement, attending to road related incidents such as collision scenes and conducting patrol duties. Even at times working alongside the Singapore Police Force themselves.

Defunct assets

Defunct divisions and establishments

Land Divisions

Police Coast Guard

Popular media works related to SPF

Seletar Robbery, Singapore's first television drama programme, was based on crime and the police force.




Television programs


Recent Controversies

The Singapore Police Force maintains a wholesome image across the entire island and is known for being clean and upright. However the rare and occasional controversies remain debated in the parliament[26][27] or the courts, some that result in conviction. As a conviction example, voyeurism by male police serviceman on fellow female police officers do happen as in the case of Abdul Qayyum Mohd Hashim who was imprisoned nine months from 17 March 2016 after 11 charges of taking photographs of a nude female police constable showering and theft of a brassiere.[28]

See also

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Singapore Police Force.



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  • "In the Service of the Nation", John Drysdale, Federal Publications, 1985 ISBN 9971-4-0703-5
  • "Phoenix: the story of the Home Team ", Felix Soh, Times Editions, 2003 ISBN 981-232-637-5
  • "Policing Singapore in the 19th & 20th centuries", Peer M. Akbur, Singapore Police Force, 2002 ISBN 981-04-7024-X
  • "Singapore Police Force Annual", Singapore Police Force, several editions

External links

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