Makers of riot control products are seeing increased demand from law enforcement bodies across America who fear Ferguson-style civil unrest hitting other areas of the country, according to a new report.
The report, published by Sandler Research, says that demand for surveillance drones is driving growth, with new systems that deploy water canons to “handle large crowds and demonstration(s)” also proving popular.
Riot control systems are expected to “generate revenues of over USD 3.5 billion by the end of 2020,” with North America being one of the primary growth areas for upgraded weapons due to “militarization of the police department and other law enforcement agencies” in the aftermath of the 2014 riots in Ferguson, Missouri.
Purchases of long-range acoustic devices, whips, batons and armored vehicles that will be used to “disperse, control, and arrest people involved in riots and protests” are also on the increase.
“Demand for such equipment is expected to rise during the next few years,” states the report, with authorities in Iran, Egypt, Russia, China, and Thailand also spending increased amounts on riot control equipment in advance of potential social disorder.