Jul 4 2012 by Johnathon Menzies, Stirling Observer Wednesday
OFFICERS from Central Scotland Police are hoping pedal power will help them tackle crime and foster better links with their communities.
A total of 14 officers from across the force have undergone training in the last month and will be seen out and about on bikes throughout the coming months.
Chief Constable Derek Penman explained: “We’re keen that local officers can be seen working within their communities and also that they are more accessible to local people.
“Taking officers out of cars and onto bikes means they can more effectively patrol the areas where local residents have identified issues, providing more opportunities for people to stop and chat with officers throughout the area they live and work in.
“We are particularly keen for our community officers to speak to young people and believe the bikes will help achieve this, especially during the school holidays.”
A spokesperson for the local constabulary said the bikes would to used to help police the likes of parades, protests and demonstrations, as well as assisting with searches for a given missing person – in addition to pursuits where cars, or officers on foot, may encounter difficulty.
The two-wheeled tactic was recently deployed as the London 2012 Olympic Torch Relay passed through the local area. Officers used bikes to travel back and forth throughout the convoy, and speak to people lining the route along the way.
Chief Constable Penman concluded: “We are also aware of the environmental, health and economic benefits of using bikes and this initiative supports the Carbon Trust’s Carbon Management Programme to reduce carbon emissions and improve air quality in our communities.”
In addition to training, officers have been provided with kit including cycling shoes, trousers, helmets and high visibility jackets carrying the Central Scotland Police insignia.
Further training courses have been planned for later in the year.