Motorcycle Traffic Enforcement Title Banner

Summary

Traffic enforcement is essential to achieving significant reductions in the number of deaths and injuries due to motor vehicle crashes. Motorcycles can be effective and important tools in expanding a department's traffic enforcement capabilities. All agencies contacted for this Guide that had experience with the establishment of newly mobilized motorcycle patrol units indicated they planned to continue or expand these units. Agencies that have only been using motorcycles for as little as one or two years remarked that the unit had outperformed expectations. Some of the agencies said that they had not anticipated how well the motorcycles would be received by the public. 

Sheriff Craig Webre, Lafourche Parish, Louisiana said, “I feel that motorcycles are an essential component to any well-rounded, full service law enforcement agency. Our motorcycle unit has tremendously enhanced our ability to provide all of the police traffic services that are required in a growing area like ours. They are an invaluable aid in the area of public outreach and community relations, and have allowed us to participate in many special events directly related to motorcycles.” 

Agencies that had the motorcycles in service for only a year have had requests from community groups to have the motorcycles present at their functions. Many law enforcement officers remarked that they were pleased at the benefits they experienced by implementing a motorcycle patrol unit. These benefits included both enforcement functions and enhancement of community relations. 

Director Ray Horwath of the Will County Sheriff's Office in Joliet Illinois, hadthis to say regarding motorcycle patrol unit deployment: “We knew beforehand that Motor Units would be very beneficial in traffic enforcement details and in heavy traffic locations, such as race days at the Chicagoland Speedway. In addition, we have found that the Motor Units have a tremendous public relations benefit, as citizens have repeatedly come up to the Motor Deputies to talk about the units.” 

NHTSA is certain that the information in this Guide will assist law enforcement administrators in planning and implementing a motorcycle unit and taking an aggressive posture toward traffic safety and traffic law enforcement.

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