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   Deutsche Polizei:  Luftschutzpolizei - Air Protection Police

One of the Insignia Used by the Air Protection Police

Air Protection Police

The Air Protection Police (Luftschutzpolizei-LSP) was an organization activated on 1 June 1942 whose purpose it was to organize and control air defense related activities throughout Germany.  The Air Defense Police came about as a result of heavy Allied bombing attacks that eventually overwhelmed its predecessor organization, the Security and Assistance Service (Sicherheits und Hilfdienst-SHD). 

The Luftschutzpolizei fell within the full authority of the German Order Police (Ordnungspolizei), but by most accounts it is best regarded as Germany’s central air defense organization.  Air defense conscripts were trained by the local chief of the Ordnungspolizie and fell under his overall jurisdiction.  Most members were volunteers although many were likely former police officers now called upon for additional service time.  Many period photographs clearly illustrate that the men who served in the Air Protection Police were middle-aged.

Members of the Luftschutzpolizei worked closely with other organizations such as the Technical Emergency Corps (Technische Nothilfe-Teno), the Fire Protection Police (Feuerschutzpolizei), and the Air Protection Warning Service (Luftschutzwarndienst-LSW).  Coordination between organizations was vital to the overall work of all units involved in air raid defense.

Units were authorized to control the civilian population during air attacks, assist and provide medical and evacuation services with the German Red Cross (Deutsches Rote Kreuz), organize repair services for buildings, utilities, and transportation centers, decontaminate areas and conduct gas detection, care for wounded animals and livestock, assist with fire-fighting duties, and to provide rescue and ambulance services to victims of Allied bombing. 

Essentially, the Air Protection Police organization was Germany’s answer to a comprehensive need for a single air defense organization.  Due to the nature of the work involved, members were required to have better head protection than what was generally provided by the standard Luftschutz gladiator helmets.  Unit members typically wore dark blue M1935, M1940, and M1942 “beaded” combat helmets with standard police or Luftschutz insignia.

The increased need for control during air raid attacks was one of the many factors which lead to the transfer of the organization to the Order Police (Ordnungspolizei-ORPO) umbrella.  Of interesting note is that the transfer of authority was in part largely due to Heinrich Himmler's long standing goal of gaining total control over all of Germany's infrastructure through the administration of any group or organization that could be deemed as vital to national security.

Overview

Each section of German-Helmets.com is divided into separate Information Tracks that outline important details, facts, and historical notes pertaining to steel helmets used by the German Armed Forces during World War II.  

Information Tracks are organized by subject matter and their content is directly related to the service arm or organization to which each topic is related.  Topic areas that bridge one subject matter to another are cross linked within each Information Track.

This Information Track provides historical facts pertaining to helmets of the Air Protection Police from 1942-1945.  Individual links related to this subject are outlined below.

    Primary Topics

Helmet Types

Helmet Insignia

Helmet Photos

Period Photos

    Related Topics

Luftschutzwarndienst

    Deutsche Polizei

Bahnschutzpolizei

Feldpolizei-Wehrmacht

Feuerwehren

Feuerschutzpolizei (FSP)

Gendarmerie

Hilfspolizeien

Kasernierte Polizei

Landespolizei-Ordnungspolizei

Landespolizeigruppe General Göring

Luftschutzpolizei (LSP)

Schutzpolizei (Schupo)

Technische Nothilfe (TeNo)

Wasserschutzpolizei

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