November 15, 2005 - Knoxville Mayor Bill
Haslam and Police Chief Sterling Owen today opened the new Knoxville
Police Department Drivers Training Center. The Drivers Training Center
completes the final phase of the state-of-the-art Phil Keith Training
The Drivers Training Center will provide a safe place for training
officers the skills needed for everyday police enforcement activities.
The center contains an oval track 6/10th of a mile in length. The
center also has an urban skills area along with a special skid area
that will allow officers an opportunity to practice safe maneuvering
on a wet roadway.
Chief Owen said, "This facility will provide the department an
area where we can simulate real world driving situations that our
officers encounter everyday. This will result in better trained officers
serving the needs of the citizens of Knoxville."
The centerpiece of the facility is a four-story control tower where
training supervisors will be able to oversee the activities around
the 12-acre site. In the unlikely event of a problem developing on
the course, the training supervisor will be able to alert all personnel
to the problem, thus eliminating the risk of personal injury for the
drivers and instructors.
Mayor Haslam said, "This facility shows the commitment the department
has for providing the best training opportunities to the men and woman
of the police department. In turn, the officers will be able to provide
better service to our customers, the citizens of Knoxville."
The streets that are a part of the urban skills training area have
all been named after employees who dedicated their careers to the
improvement of the Knoxville Police Department.
Assistant Chief Tom Hammer (1946-1976)
Chief Joe Fowler (1950-1978)
Captain Gerald King (1962-1990)
Sergeant Gary Shaffer (1971-2002)
Commander Judie Martin (1977-2006)
PO IV Van Bubel (1979-Present)
Deputy Chief Rudy Bradley (1962-1997)
In a surprise announcement, Chief Sterling Owen officially named
the entire track area after the current Director of Training for
the Knoxville Police Department, Captain Don Jones.
Chief Owen said, "Captain Jones has been an incredible asset to
the department and to the city during the planning, design, and
construction phases of this facility. He has worked long hours
throughout the project to make certain this facility would meet
the needs of the department for years to come. Due to his commitment,
it is my pleasure to name this facility the Don Jones Track."