You may have noticed OPP bike patrol officers around town on the Canada Day long weekend, and you may have wondered about the bicycles.
"Four officers received updated training and we now have five officers trained in Oxford County," said Oxford OPP Constable Stacey Culbert, Community Service/Media Relations. "They are able to access all the trails and are more visible and proactive within the communities we police."
The officers have scheduled assigned shifts during days and afternoons around Oxford, including Tillsonburg.
"The bikes are out in Oxford and specifically assigned to Tillsonburg, Ingersoll and Norwich throughout the summer months," said Culbert.
They can also be assigned to special events for patrol, like the Festival of Music on Tuesday, and anywhere else in the villages and hamlets throughout Oxford County.
"Police bicycles in service will have a series of uses directly related to core police functions," said Culbert. "Each platoon currently has one trained and certified police bicycle rider. Each rider received three days of training to receive the level one certification."
OPP bicycle patrols will be useful for:
* Directed patrols in high graffiti areas, parks, and downtown high density locations.
* Patrols at all town events that require a police presence and mobility.
* Education functions - bicycle rodeos, public education opportunities, private business presentations.
* Provide presence in our residential areas.
* Provides a stealth approach to those committing crimes during evening hours in isolated areas of our parks, downtown parking lots, or other identified crime locations.
* Presence of police in the community is enhanced.
* Environmentally sound.
* Provides police with another tool to combat graffiti.
* Good example to our children and adults in the community.