Fergal O’Grady, member of An Garda Síochána based at Galway Garda station
“There are currently four mountain bikes at the station used by all the units here. The mountain bikes are a great asset to the station.
Gardaí who are on patrol in the city on bikes have a greater visibility in policing and are more approachable than members who are in a car. As a tool for policing, we are able to get around the city far quicker than any patrol car or van – they can get stuck in traffic, while this is not an issue for us on the mountain bikes. We can also go to areas where the cars cannot. Children also love to be able to talk to the Gardaí who are on the bikes and to sit on them.
Before we can even get onto the mountain bikes, we have to do a one-week intensive course in cycling craftsmanship. This ranges from low-speed skills to emergency stops on the bicycle. We also learn how to cycle up and down steps safely and how to mount and dismount the bicycle in a safe and fast manner. There are currently over 500 mountain bikes in use in An Garda Síochána, and we have 1,264 members trained in the use of mountain bikes. ”
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