CEDAR LAKE | Some Cedar Lake police officers will be on two wheels instead of four, as the department begins its first bike patrol.
Cedar Lake recently received a grant from the Crown Point Community Foundation to obtain two bikes, Police Chief Jerry Smith said. Savings from the use of E85 fuel in town vehicles allowed the department to provide an additional two.
Seven officers recently began training with the Hobart police; they’ll be out on neighborhood patrol a few weekends this fall.
Next spring, once tactical training on the bikes is completed, they’ll be able to ride all summer.
“It can be more challenging” in a community like Cedar Lake, said Smith. “We’re spread out and we have a 900-acre lake right in the middle of our community. But it’s very feasible and very doable.”
The department also has acquired trucks with bike racks and over the next few weekends police will be taking the bikes to various subdivisions and unloading the bikes to go on patrol.
Having officers on bikes will not affect motorized patrol, Smith added. Bike patrol police will work in teams of two, and will be out riding as an addition to regular motor patrols.
The goal, Smith said, is to resume training in the spring and continue patrols through that fall.
"We want to have them out on Halloween night," he said.
Bike patrols are also perfect for events like Summerfest, the Labor Day parade and Hometown fest.
“It’s all part of helping the community and reaching out,” Smith said.