D&R Electronics is about innovation above all else, which is how they make every police car even better. The company has a wide-open approach toward this goal, as they have one of the deepest product portfolios in the industry. Just about anything that can be found in a police vehicle – D&R manufactures it, and does so at an impressively high level. That’s because of the company’s founder, Rinaldo Darolfi, was an artist before he started the business. And as an artist, Darolfi was quickly able to capture the aesthetics and functionality needed from the new digital wave of police equipment.
D&R’s product catalog is extensive. The company manufactures lighting, sirens, consoles, weapon, and laptop mounts, storage solutions, cargo partitions, K9 insets, window bars, door covers, and a whole lot more. In many ways, D&R is a one source producer for fleets.
The company was founded by Darolfi in 1976 but was originally focused on repairing stereo equipment. That was a far cry from Darolfi’s training as a plaster artist, but when he immigrated to Canada from Italy, he realized that there wasn’t much of a market for a plaster master in The Great White North. Quick on his feet, Darolfi turned his attention to learning electronics and their proper upkeep. A year after founding D&R, the first police lightbars began arriving on the market. In 1977, D&R dedicated much of its time to repairing sirens and lighting for the Ontario Provincial Police, or OPP. After getting some experience with the technology, Darolfi offered to design and develop a custom panel for the OPP. He got the go-ahead to do so and the rest is history. Over the next several decades, D&R Electronics would prove to be ahead of the industry in designing feature-rich police vehicle equipment.
D&R Electronics Product Offerings
It’s impossible to get the company’s full portfolio into a single listing, but there are several products worth highlighting. Some of those products include:
1. Lightbars, and particularly the Odyssey – D&R Electronics manufactures several top end lightbar models, but the Odyssey is worth extra attention for its smart design and versatility. It’s one of the few lightbars on the market that combines lightbar and arrowboard functionality.
When in lightbar mode, it maintains an ultra-low, 3-inch profile. Its 360-degree LED arrangement means that it is visible from all directions and in low visibility conditions. And when the arrowboard is engaged, the vehicle is even easier to see from a distance. The arrowboard sits inside the Odyssey, and when the switch is flipped, it opens up to reveal the board, which is about 2 feet tall and attention-commanding. The arrowboard guides traffic and provides instant direction for oncoming traffic in a way that standard lightboards can’t.
2. Consoles – D&R Electronics manufactures consoles for most police vehicle makes and models, and they provide some valuable functionality. Some are available with an optional swing arm, mounted to the top of the console for additional workspace. And each one can be paired with several pieces of remote head equipment, so fleet managers can customize their consoles as they see fit. Finally, most D&R consoles do not require a floorplate to install, so they go in quickly and without strenuous effort.
3. Sirens, including the Enforcer and Thunder – The Enforcer and Thunder are D&R’s two siren models. The latter is a low-frequency siren, while the former operates at standard frequencies.
The Enforcer is a full feature siren with a standard air horn and eight pushbutton switches for distinct functions. The pushbuttons are backlit as well so that they can be seen at night. The Enforcer can operate one or a pair of 100W speakers and is available in either a 12V or 24V operating range. It comes with park kill functionality and with radio rebroadcast capability, along with a plug-in, noise-canceling microphone.
4. K9 partitions – D&R’s K9 partitions are designed for most police vehicle models, including those manufactured by Ford and Chevrolet. All of the company’s partitions are custom built to fit the vehicle perfectly and can be designed for one or more canines. They are built with extra large ventilation and sight holes for better canine comfort and safety. D&R also designs their K9 partitions so that they are easy to clean and keep free of dangerous pathogens. Finally, D&R K9 partitions can be built with room for extra storage, and every police vehicle could use extra storage.
Power management systems – Monitoring and controlling power consumption is essential in police vehicles, as the sheer number of aftermarket products drawing current has grown in recent years. Parasitic draw from the battery is particularly concerning, as it can render the battery dead in just a matter of hours. The solution isn’t asking the police to meter their device usage, as that’s just impractical. No, the better solution is installing power monitoring and control devices that ensure a dead battery doesn’t occur.
D&R Electronics’ Watchdog is ideal for this purpose. While in operation, the Watchdog monitors voltage output and reacts if it drops below 13V or rises above 18V. When it does, the Watchdog activates a timer delay, and when that delay is up, it will shut off devices so that the battery is capable of cranking the engine. It’s a simple, cost-effective solution to a fleetwide problem.
D&R Electronics was established by an artist, which may be why its products are such elegant solutions. And with so many solutions to choose from, D&R can provide fleet managers with all of the hardware they need to modernize their vehicles.