High school students turning old ambulance into SWAT vehicle (VIDEO)

A group of junior and senior high school students in Willhoughby, Ohio, have spent the last three months working to turn an old ambulance into a SWAT vehicle to be used by local law enforcement.

The ambulance was donated to the Northern Career Institute by a South Euclid fire department and once the transformation is completed, the vehicle will be used by the Eastside Department Group Enforcement, or EDGE, during hostage negotiation type situations.

Officer Ben Feltoon with the University Heights Police Department, who is also an EDGE negotiator, said they’ve never had a vehicle like this before and it will no doubt be a valuable addition to the force.

Additionally, because the vehicle was donated and the labor free, the project saved the city thousands of dollars.

The students receive school credits for the project, which should be completed by May, but Stephen Thompson, Superintendent of the Willoughby-Eastlake Schools, said it’s really about much more than that.

“Certainly the underlying goal was to help foster better relationships between young people and our local police departments,” Thompson said.

And that’s one lesson that will likely last a lifetime.

[ ABC News 5 ]