Learn About NY State Troopers

NY State Troopers

New York State Police, also known as State Troopers, are the state police force for New York. They are divided into 10 troops, each assigned to a specific geographic area of the state. These troops are lettered A-H, K, L and T. There is also a Troop NYC that covers New York City. Each troop is responsible for 2 or more zones, which are numbered. There are several sub-stations, or police barracks, within each zone. There are more than 4,600 State Troopers in the state of New York. The New York State Police was founded in 1917, and signed into law by the legislature on April 11.

The troopers have worn uniforms made from gray wool since 1958. The pants feature a black stripe down the side in honor of troopers killed in the line of duty. They wear a tie featuring purple and black, and a purple hat band on their tan felt stetson hats. They carry Glock 37 handguns for protection, and effective Spring 2011, tasers for patrol purposes.

The NY State Police has a large fleet of Ford Crown Victoria Police Interceptors, as well as a few Dodge Chargers, Ford Expeditions and several other vehicles. Marked NY State Trooper vehicles are dark blue and feature yellow reflective detailing.

Becoming a New York State Trooper is a complicated process and may take several years due to the training necessary and the stringent qualifications. Only New York residents with a valid driver’s license can apply, and the maximum age for appointment to the NY State Police is 35, although this may be extended in the case of certain candidates who have served active military duty. Candidates must have earned a high school diploma or the equivalent, and completed 60 credit hours at an accredited university. Those with fewer than 60 credit hours may be able to have some of the hours waived if they have completed two years of active military duty or completed an approved police officer training course.

Qualified candidates are called to a 48-hour Trooper Candidate Processing weekend where they are given a written exam, physical performance test, psychological evaluation, background investigation, polygraph test and medical examination. The Physical Ability Test (PAT) includes sit-ups, push-ups and a run of 1.5 miles. There are also other specific medical requirements such as a minimum of 20/100 vision, corrected to 20/20. Some requirements may be slightly different for women and military veterans.

Candidates who pass these tests are sent to a 26-week training course at the New York State Police Academy in Albany, NY. There is also a 10-week field training period with a training officer required before the candidate is assigned a troop.

NY State Police make an average gross salary of $112,000 per year. This average includes all ranks and positions within the police force. The average trooper salary is $101,000 per year. The only state employees in New York who, on average, make more than State Troopers are state Supreme Court judges. Judges in New York make an average of $140,000 annually. The State of New York also offers a comprehensive benefits and retirement package.

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