LOOK out if you’re intent on causing mischief along the banks of the Forth & Clyde and Union Canals.
That’s the message from Police Scotland whose officers have taken to the saddle on pedal bikes and dirt bikes to keep everyone safe on and around the canal. Regular patrols are up and running and the officers are working closely with Scottish Canals, boaters, commercial boat hirers, clubs and societies, communities and residents to show that all trouble and trouble makers are “handle barred” from the canals.
Police say that the bikes allow the uniformed officers to mingle with regular cyclists and to get to hot spots fast along the towpath, a feature of operations that’s especially useful in urban areas along the canals where some boaters and users have been subjected to anti-social behaviour by local youths.
The bikes will also help the drive to up the number of through transit boaters on both canals thanks to the very visible police presence by making what is already a safe environment safer still.
A Police Scotland spokeswoman said: “The canals are enjoyed by thousands of people safely every year. We want to ensure that this continues and develops while dealing with the minority who set out to spoil the enjoyment of others. The bikes are an ideal way of policing the canals as they make officers highly visible, mobile and able to step off and speak to and get to know people along the way.”