I am sharing this article on the use of bicycles by first responders, particularly the police for their work:
International Police Mountain Bike Association (April 11, 2023) “Why Bicycles are Great for Police and First Responders,” Policemag.com, https://www.policemag.com/patrol/news/15382905/why-bicycles-are-great-for-police-and-first-responders [Last accessed: 4/15/2023]
To quote from the article:
“The advantages of using bicycles in public safety include:
• Bicycles can easily penetrate crowds – in highly congested areas police, EMS, and security personnel on bikes can move around more easily than patrol cars and ambulances.
• Response time in heavy traffic is improved – during their trial period in Orlando, bike medics responded in less than one minute 55% of the time; less than two minutes 83% of the time; and less than three minutes 95% of the time; contrasted with an average of four minutes for motorized rescue units.
• Stealth advantage – bicycles give officers the “stealth advantage” – because they are silent. Cops on bikes can ride right up to the scene of a crime before they are noticed.
• Police, EMS, and security cyclists lead by example – promoting helmet use and bike safety to the community and its children.
• Bicycles are great for public relations – an officer or a medic on a bike is much more approachable than one in a patrol car or ambulance.
• Bicycle use promotes good health – and departments benefit from decreased healthcare costs.
• Bicycles are enjoyable – even occasional bike duty improves morale.
• Bicycles are cost-effective – the average cost per bike is approximately $1200, a fraction of the cost of a cruiser, an ambulance, or any other motorized vehicle – and the annual maintenance costs are low.
• Bicycles are environmentally-friendly – no fossil fuels or emissions, and less parking surface is needed.”
While there are no disadvantages mentioned in the article, the advantages are clear and can be assumed to outweigh the cons of using bicycles. This is especially true in an urban setting where the items mentioned above are applicable and surely gives police and other first responders an advantage. In the Philippines, where the image of a bad or corrupt police officer is one who has bulging tummy, more physically fit and approachable officers on bicycles will surely improve the image of the PNP and other traffic enforcers as well.
Quezon City’s Green Transport Office Bike Patrol