Police bicycle proficiency test

A Police Community Support Officer has told a stunned village council that he spends up to six hours of his eight hour shift walking to different areas on his beat as he is not qualified to ride a bike.

The officer told parish councillors that he couldn’t ride to their village because he hadn’t passed his “police cycling proficiency test.”

The minuted meeting prompted one of the councillors to put in a complaint to North Yorkshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner claiming the situation was “beyond parody.”

Police said that before officers were able to ride a bike on duty they had to go through health and safety procedures, which the officer had not completed at the time.

So instead he spent up to six hours of his eight hour shift walking the seven miles from his base in Clifton Moor, York to and from the two villages that formed his beat.

Not sure about beyond parody but the parody horizon is definitely being approached, isn’t it?

Of course what should really happen here is that the cretin who assigned him to that beat should be fired for purblind stupidity. But that doesn’t ever happen in the public services, does it?

23 comments on “Police bicycle proficiency test

  1. Further down it explains that he could take the bus between villages, but he chooses to walk so as to spend more time talking to people. Certainly we aren’t being told the whole story.

  2. You can make your own assumptions as to the races involved.

    Team Leader: Sorry, boss, we need a large bobbejaan spanner.

    Section Manager: Okay, take this note to the stores, and hurry up, take my bicycle.

    Long time later, still no sign of the Team Leader. Section Manager looks out of window to see Team Leader walking across the yard with his bicycle.

    Section Manager: Why did you walk?

    Team Leader: I can’t ride a bicycle, boss.

    Section Manager: Why did you take the bicycle then?

    Team Leader: You told me to, boss.

  3. Wait a moment, is he really taking six hours to walk seven miles? That’s nowhere near even walking pace.

  4. @ Andrew Pearson
    Seven miles each way – but half the time is spent chatting to people he meets on the way, otherwise it would be an-hour-and-a-half. So 4.67 mph which is a decent pace.

  5. > You can make your own assumptions as to the races involved.

    Yes, obviously we can. But why would we even ask ourselves the question?

    FWIW, the PCSO concerned seems to be this man. My guess is that he chooses to walk because he’s not very busy, there being no crime wave is Osbaldwick.

  6. Curiously, this isn’t far off what you want police to be doing.
    Copper walks from his station to his assigned place, has a wander round for a couple hours, walks back. Providing he varies his route, 14 miles of Yorkshire gets thoroughly policed. This is worse than two thugs in a panda who spend a shift parked behind a hedge waiting for a car with a defective brake light to pass?

  7. b(n)is,

    I agree. And quite possibly the local constabulary are enlightened enough to agree too, which might be why they want this beat done by bike, not by car. All the stopping and talking to people can still be done very effectively by bike, but with less time wasted than on foot. Fact is, though, that this guy can’t do the job as defined yet for some reason gets the job anyway. And we in the private sector don’t get that luxury.

  8. In this age where they are obsessed with inter-disciplinary cross-cutting inter-modal integration for joined up government, he should have got a lift with the postman.

    Maybe “sticking your thumb out” and “sitting in a passenger seat” require a residential course.

  9. @SQ2
    Oh, I know. That was the substance of the post.
    But: “… with less time wasted than on foot.”
    What did that old “principals of policing” thing from the C19th say? The sign of effective policing is not crimes punished but the absence of crime? Something like that.
    Ideally, all police time should be “wasted” because they don’t find anything worth doing.

  10. Nonsense (re cops walking everywhere). Unless criminals do, too.

    (This is not the same as believing they do a stellar job, they don’t.)

    I think it was Inspector Gadget who told the story (in his book or blog) about not being allowed to use the kettle in his nick.

    Funnier, or sadder, still, after he had got up on a chair to change the clock to GMT from BST, someone from UNISON changed it back to the wrong time because it wasn’t Gadget’s job to change the clock – it was the job of a (Union member) estates clock changer.

  11. @b(n)is

    ‘What did that old “principals of policing” thing from the C19th say? The sign of effective policing is not crimes punished but the absence of crime? Something like that.
    Ideally, all police time should be “wasted” because they don’t find anything worth doing.’

    That was the nineteenth century, though. People were law abiding in general, because they feared the consequences, be they earthy or supernatural.

    Look at the crime rate in 1814 if you don’t believe me.

    There is no possible way the modern cops can stroll everywhere and keep crims in order with a stern word and a clip round the ear, not least because they’re not really allowed to talk sternly to them, and clips round the ear are a distinct no-no.

  12. > Look at the crime rate in 1814 if you don’t believe me

    Where would I find a record of that?

    One thing I can look up is recorded homicide rates in the 19th century. About 1.5 per 100,000 population, compared with about 1 per 100,000 now. And the recorded rate will have been substantially below the actual rate.

  13. It was a joke, you autistic tool.

    However, one thing we can say about the 1814 murder rate is that the trauma surgery was top notch.

    (Also a joke.)

  14. Interested, you should know by now that socialists must all have their sense of humour removed. After all, how else would they be able to keep a straight face?

  15. bif,

    > he should have got a lift with the postman.

    I’m pretty sure neither the Royal Mail’s insurance policy nor their health & safety procedures would allow it.

    b(n)is,

    > Ideally, all police time should be “wasted” because they don’t find anything worth doing.

    Well, make up your mind. It was you who said that wandering around chatting to people is what we want the police to be doing. I was agreeing with you. Tsk.

  16. “I’m pretty sure neither the Royal Mail’s insurance policy nor their health & safety procedures would allow it.”

    Do mail buses serving remote areas still exist?

  17. @ Glen Dorran
    They should do.
    If they do not in Lochaber then that is an argument for bringing back the stocks for the bureaucrat who vetoed them.
    In England there was an attempt to bring them back around dozen years ago but I don’t know whether they lasted.

  18. Sorry SQ2. Think we have our wires crossed. I’m thoroughly in favour of police time being “wasted”, as long as its in a productive manner.
    Back home I used to watch the Town Police idling about on the Paseo Maritimo watching the kids going into the clubs. They’re still idling about when the kids come out. They do bugger all. Which is the point of them. My London area was almost entirely restaurants, winebars & pubs. No time “wasted” by the police there.They do “response policing”. So you don’t see them unless it’s absolutely necessary. About 11:30 for the nightly stabbing, as a rule.

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