reduced when there is a high probability that he has a cardiovascular disease. The State Police cannot afford to retain officers who are likely to suffer attacks when placed under stress in an emergency situation.
Additionally, plaintiffs' own expert, Dr. Mostardi, in his report of a project he undertook for the Akron, Ohio police department, recommends against employing anyone with a moderately high or higher risk of cardiovascular disease. This high risk of developing cardiovascular disease, along with the decrease of an officer's capacities in the various physical and psychomotor dimensions as he approaches and passes age 60, leads us to conclude that all or substantially all officers over the age of 60 would be unable to perform safely and efficiently the duties of a State Police Officer.
Even if the fact that 86% of officers nearing the age of 60 have a high risk of developing cardiovascular disease were insufficient to demonstrate that the State Police appropriately rely on age as a proxy for individual evaluation, this fact, along with others, supports our alternative holding that it is highly impractical, if not impossible, to make individualized determinations of the capabilities of 60 year old police officers.
Expert testimony given by both plaintiffs' and defendants' experts demonstrates that as a person grows older, his ability to perform physical and psychomotor functions decreases, while the chance that he will develop disabling cardiovascular problems increases (see findings of fact, above). Although these facts, by themselves, may be insufficient to justify age as a BFOQ, they do justify questioning the ability of older officers to perform the critical tasks of a state police officer. Unfortunately, individual testing of older police officers is highly impractical and nearly impossible.
The typical test for determining body strength, one of the job qualifications validated in III-A above, is the one Repetition Maximum method. In this test, strength is determined by the amount of weight an individual can lift one time and one time only. This test is performed using different lifting apparatus and different muscle groups to determine the strength of various parts of the body. The test, however, is dangerous to administer to older officers who have a high probability of having or developing cardiovascular problems, because the individual is asked to exert maximum force. Exerting maximum force results in a dramatic increase in blood pressure. Screening for hypertension and poor cardiac function must be performed before administering this test, and anyone who has even mild hypertension or poor cardiac function cannot be tested.
Screening for poor cardiac function prior to administering a fitness test involves a physical examination by a physician, laboratory studies, resting electrocardiograms, and exercise electrocardiograms by a cardiologist. Only after this type of thorough medical screening could a 60 year old who shows no signs of even mild hypertension or poor cardiac function be given a strength test such as the one repetition maximum test, and then only in the presence of a physician.
In order to accurately reflect the physical condition of a person over 60, and his ability to perform the job of a State Police Officer, medical screening and physical testing should be performed at least annually. The older the individual becomes, the riskier it is to administer the test because of the increased risk of silent heart disease, and the danger that physical performance testing will precipitate an attack. Further, the cost of performing annual medical screening and physical testing is prohibitive. For each officer, the cost to test strength, skill, agility, and visual acuity, and to perform blood tests and stress, or cardiovascular tests would be in the area of $ 600.00. If any abnormality were detected during the medical screening, the cost would sky-rocket, as more advanced tests would be needed.
In sum, even if a 60 year old could be tested for the qualifications of physical strength and endurance, i.e., even if he passed the stringent medical screening, the cost of the test on an annual basis renders testing individuals above the age of 60 for their ability to perform the duties of a state police officer highly impractical. Further, while we recognize that many tests can be done to discover many physical capabilities and diseases, we do not believe testing is practical or economically feasible in the present case. We agree with defendants' expert, Dr. Paolone, that testing cannot safely measure all dimensions in everyone. Annual testing would place an unreasonable administrative and financial burden upon the Pennsylvania State Police force. We therefore hold that mandatory retirement at age 60 is a necessary proxy for the safety-related job qualifications of good health, strength, endurance, agility, and dexterity.
IV. CONCLUSIONS OF LAW
We conclude that the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the Pennsylvania State Police have met their burden of proof that the mandatory retirement age of sixty for Pennsylvania State Police Officers is a bona fide occupational qualification. Accordingly, the mandatory retirement statute, 71 P.S. § 65(d), is valid and is not in violation of the federal Age Discrimination in Employment Act.
AND NOW, this 22nd day of October, 1986, in accordance with the accompanying Memorandum, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED and declared that:
1. The Pennsylvania mandatory retirement statute for State Police officers, 71 P.S. § 65(d) is not in violation of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA), 29 U.S.C. §§ 621-634; nor does the statute violate the Due Process or Equal Protection Clauses of the United States Constitution.
2. Plaintiffs' motion for a permanent injunction against Defendants to restrain the involuntary retirement of Pennsylvania State Police officers who reach the age of sixty is denied.