Covington cops get back on their bikes

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COVINGTON, LA -- It's been years since the Covington Police Department put officers on bicycles to patrol the city.  Now, the bikes are back.

Covington Police Chief Tim Lentz says, while the bike patrols were dismantled years ago, the bicycles remained in storage.

Lentz says the bikes have been dusted off and tuned up.  He specifically thanked Patrick Brooks of Brooks Bicycle Shop in Covington for help to make sure the bikes are in top shape.

Last month, four officers began training to patrol on the bikes.  Lentz says the officers are learning to use slow maneuver techniques to make their way through crowds.  They're also learning how to quickly -- and safely -- dismount from the bikes and how to ride down stairways.

The training was conducted by Officer Scott Verdun of the Kenner Police Department who is a certified trainer.

Lentz says the bikes also make the officers more accessible to the public.  He says they're more approachable and can better interact with people on the streets.  It's a great way, he says, to build one-on-one contacts within the community.

For a glimpse of the officers and their training, click on the video button above.  Also, a big thanks to the Covington Police Department for providing the photos.