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Police on skates to patrol city streets

Nairobi will soon have police officers on roller skates who will chase after muggers, pick pockets and notorious street gangs.

The Administration Police is training a unit of 40 police officers who will specialize in using roller skates to ease their mobility within the city centre. 

Administration Police Spokesperson, Masoud Munyi said the tactic will enhance the mobility of the officers in the city, especially when chasing after petty thieves. 

“The officers are among the group that passed out at the AP training School in Embakasi but they are still under intense training,” Mr Munyi said. 

Mr Munyi said formation of the unit is one of the ways police have devised to ensure easy mobility in sections of the city where traffic jams and crowding is a challenge. 

“We no longer depend only on patrol cars because they make it difficult for the police to move around,” Mr Munyi said. 

He said the police had initially acquired several motorcycles which have helped a lot in their movement within city estates and the CBD.

“The police must change tactic. Skates are becoming common and criminals might also take advantage of their existence to commit crime” Mr Munyi said. 

The challenge to the new tactic, he acknowledged, is that it limits police officers to just patrolling tarmacked streets. 

Several streets within the CBD have huge potholes, open sewer drainages and heaps of garbage. Incidentally, these are the streets where notorious muggers like to run to.

Aside from the introduction of the roller skates, the city will soon have sniffer dogs to help security officers to patrol bus termini.

In other cities like Jakarta in Indonesia and Berlin in Germany, rolling skates are widely used by police officers to nub traffic offenders. In Dubai too, rolling skates have been used by police since 2005.