The Fruitland, Maryland, Police Department is taking some of its officers on two wheels. The department recently formed a motor unit, with four new motorcycles on its fleet.
Police Chief Krah Plunkert told WBOC that the department initially asked the city council for two motorcycles. The council offered the department four. The units were paid for by grants and donations, so they came at no cost to taxpayers.
The motorcycles will be used largely for parades and events, as well as for traffic patrols. Lt. Blaine Guard said the units act as a tool to strengthen community relations.
"As far as the communtiy policing aspect, you can't beat it," Lt. Blaine Guard told Government Fleet. "Everybody wants to come up and ask questions. It puts you on a more personal level than being in your patrol vehicle."
Guard said people in the community will take photos of the motor unit from time to time when they see the team in formation or stopped at stoplights.
In a November Facebook post, the department named four of its officers who had completed motor unit school to use the motorcycles on patrols.
The motor unit made its inaugural ride during Fruitland's annual tree lighting at Fruitland City Hall.
About the Bikes
Guard told Government Fleet that the units are Harley-Davidson FLHTP Electra Glides, which are made for police work. The units were purchased used. Guard said they were nearly ready for use; they just needed lights added.