Crime Fighting on Harleys: Scranton Police Train with New Bikes

SCRANTON -- The weather we've been having so far this month doesn't exactly feel like motorcycle weather, but Scranton police officers are riding around on brand new Harley-Davidsons, learning how to use them as a crime fighting tools.

The Scranton Police Motorcycle Division just got an upgrade -- four new motorcycles to replace ones that were almost a decade old.

The new bikes come with new features, so that means new training.

For four Scranton police officers, this is like getting upgraded to a brand new office -- a 2017 Harley Davidson.

Blue Scranton Police traffic cones set the course on an empty lot in Dunmore as Scranton Police started a two-week motorcycle training course.

"These exercises here today are all designed for slow speed. They're not hot dogging, show off stuff. It's really safety and efficiency," explained Sgt. Mike Mayer.

Officers weaved through the cones and learned how to turn the bikes in a perfect 360.

"Number one, they can get into new spaces that cars can't get into. They can effectively get into areas even, bikes, pedal bikes, or cars can't get into to apprehend suspects," said Scranton Police Chief Carl Graziano.

Chief Graziano says the department is leasing the four bikes for about $10,000 per year. They replace motorcycles that were almost a decade old.

Next week, the officers will pick up the pace learning how to stop the bikes quickly, too, all before taking them out on the open road.

"It helps with the job," added Sgt. Mayer. "It gets us places quicker, easier, but it's nice when your office is two wheels, be out in the summer time riding, wind in your hair, sun on your face. It's fun."

The chief says the lease agreement means the department won't have 10-year-old bikes again. The 2017 motorcycles will be replaced in three years which will cut down on maintenance costs.

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