"In the year ending March 2018, there were 18,746 police firearms operations in England and Wales. This is an increase of 2,937 (19%) police firearms operations compared to the previous year, and is the highest number of operations since the year ending March 2011," the statistical bulletin, published by the UK government press service, read.
The data also demonstrated that the number of armed officers is on the rise. There were 6,459 armed officers at the end of March, which is a 3-percent increase, compared with the previous year. This is the second consecutive year which witnesses growth of armed police personnel, the statistics showed.
The data was gathered from the 43 Home Office police forces in England and Wales from April 2017 to March 2018.
UK police officers do not carry firearms on a daily basis. In 2016, the government launched a five-year national armed policing uplift program to increase armed policing capability in the use of firearms amid fears that police constables without guns might be unable to respond adequately to growing terrorist risks.