The NCTA/NCSHP Caisson Unit consists of sworn members of the North Carolina State Highway Patrol who are ready to travel on 24 hour notice.
Each member of the Caisson Unit is selected after an application and evaluation process. After being selected each member is trained in military posture and horsemanship, tradition and protocol, care and maintenance of equipment and much more. Some members have been selected to receive further training from the Atlanta Police Department Mounted Patrol Unit.
In addition to the basic horsemanship required, these Troopers must also have knowledge in the daily handling of horses including loading, unloading and transportation problems. Grooming and basic veterinary care are also included as well as the constant daily process of barn management.
The Caisson unit trains with its own members every 8-10 weeks at select locations around the state. We believe much effort should go into properly training each and every member of this unit. Our goal is to train for perfect results with the goal of having perfect results during our missions. If we train to just get it right and fall short then we will have failure; if we train for perfection and fall short we should still have a very good result. We attempt to make our training as realistic to mission issues as possible. Our training has to focus on negotiating speed humps, making 90 degree turns, dealing with crowds of people close to the horses, stopping and starting on inclines and declines, traveling on different types of surfaces, conducting missions in cemeteries, city streets, county roads and residential neighborhoods. Therefore, we are constantly changing our training locations.