TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - Officers were out and about Friday, training for the Toledo Police Department's mountain bike unit.
"They are on mountain bikes patrolling the city. We have guys from every shift out here, but rather than in a car, they are on bikes riding around patrolling the streets," said Officer Russell Burke.
The week long academy is getting officers prepared to handle anything thrown their way.
"There is nothing to protect them, all they have is that bike and their partner," said Burke.
He says the unit has proven to be an excellent tool in catching criminals in the act.
"It's easier to sneak up on people. So, you get the guys doing the drugs, people trying to break in, they never see us coming, we're on top of them before they know who we are," he said.
Burke says it's also good for connecting with residents.
"They will still take the calls, they will still get dispatched, but on the other side of it, what they found out yesterday, if you are on afternoons and it is still nice out, the people love you. They feel that connection because you are not in that car," said Burke.
Friday was the last day of training. You can expect to see TPD's bike unit on the streets as soon as this weekend.
Another group of officers will be trained in May. TPD has around 150 officers already trained and able to get on a bike and patrol.