The Bristol Police motorcycle unit officially began operation on July 1, 2015. The motor unit is part of the Traffic Division and has four officers assigned to it.
The department purchased two fully outfitted 2015 Harley-Davidson Electra Glide motorcycles. The budget for the unit was fully funded with money seized under asset forfeiture. The motors are equipped with mobile data computer terminals and printers for generating crash reports.
Operating a motor unit requires a high level of training and talent. In conjunction with Harley-Davidson, the four motor officers received extensive training through Northwestern University in obstacle training and advanced maneuvering skills.
The primary purpose of the unit is to foster positive community relations with the public. A motor officer is more approachable than an officer in a vehicle. Without the physical barrier, the officer can easily strike up conversations with children, teens, and adults alike. In addition, the motors will be used for crash investigations, motor vehicle enforcement, and community events. Weather permitting, the motor unit will operate from April through November.