GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews / 2 Oct) – Bicycle-riding policemen will become permanent fixtures in major streets here starting next week.
Sr. Supt. Maximo Layugan, city police director, said they will deploy beginning Monday the city’s first bicycle patrol unit to help secure key points in the downtown area and public places within the city.
He said they initially assigned 25 newly-trained police personnel to man the bicycle patrol unit.
“They will mainly augment our security patrols in crowded areas and serve as first responders in emergency cases,” he said.
The official said the assigned policemen completed earlier this week an intensive training on bike patrol facilitated by the Police Regional Office (PRO) 12.
Supt. Jess Solares, training manager of PRO-12’s special training unit, said the training covered lectures and sessions on basic bicycle patrol, bicycle handling, first aid and other related topics.
He said the policemen were trained on tackling obstacle courses and bicycle riding techniques like making power slides, power brakes and running in zigzags.
“We taught them how to use their bikes as tools for defending themselves in situations that don’t need the use of brute force,” he said.
Layugan said the bicycle policemen will be equipped with standard riding and law enforcement gears.
He said they will carry handheld radios and first aid kits to enable them to respond in emergency cases like accidents.
The City Police Office earlier decided to establish its own bicycle patrol unit to further improve its operations.
The city government delivered early last month some 14 mountain bikes and 30 handheld radios to the City Police Office in support of the initiative.
“This is a big relief for us because we will be saving a lot from fuel expenses and at the same time make our operations more efficient,” Layugan said.
He added that it would also help keep some of their personnel healthy and fit for duty.