Irish Special Operations

Emergency Response Unit (ERU)

The Emergency Response Unit (Irish: Aonad Práinnfhreagartha) (ERU) of An Garda Síochána is a specialist unit, formed to deal with situations that cannot be handled by regular Garda officers.


The ERU was formed as the Special Task Force in 1978, following a decision of Justice Ministers at the Ninth Council of the EEC at Brussels in 1975. The Special Task Force was based in Dublin and it formed part of the Special Detective Unit in Harcourt Street. This unit was renamed the Emergency Response Unit in 1987.

Its duties include armed support during criminal/subversive operations and specialist search techniques including forced entry.

The membership of the ERU consists exclusively of serving members of An Garda Síochána. It undergoes intensive training including proficiency in firearms, tactics, specialist skills, physical fitness and hostage rescue. Members of the ERU receive training with police forces in other countries, including the United States, Germany and the United Kingdom.


• Remington 870
• Uzi submachine gun
• Heckler & Koch MP7 (to replace the UZI 9 mm)
• Steyr SSG 69
• Sig Sauer P226

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