POCATELLO, Idaho (KIFI/KIDK) - Tuesday marks the start of a new era for District Five of the Idaho State Police as the district received the motorcycles for its first-ever Police Motor Unit.
"The bikes will help tremendously," Lt. Mike Winans said.
After an extensive process that included increasing the budget to create two new positions in Pocatello, the district was finally able to create the unit.
Winans says the motorcycles will greatly help response times.
"What we’ve noticed is we have lot more traffic in the area, so if we a crash on say the interstate, then we tend to see a lot of backup with the traffic," he said.
"A trooper in a car will get there eventually, however, a trooper on a bike will get there a lot quicker."
To mount the two Harley-Davidson bikes, the district’s newest troopers had to go through two grueling weeks of training in Meridian.
“It’s competitive. It’s aggressive, people do get hurt during it,” Cpl. Travis Gurney said.
Gurney and Trooper Josh Ingersoll make up the department’s first police motor unit. Gurney said he's been riding motorcycles and dirt bikes for his entire life. For him, the opportunity to join the unit was a chance to combine his life’s passions.
"I love riding motorcycles. I love being on a bike. So, to do what I love for work and sit on a motorcycle and something that I love, too, it just makes it ten times better."
Even though the unit is just getting started, Lt. Winans says the hope is to expand.
“With this budget go round, we did expand to Coeur d'Alene, in addition to Pocatello, and we hope to see these statewide, eventually,” he said. “They’re gonna be a great asset when it comes to traffic enforcement, as well as responding to calls.”
Winans said the troopers could be out on their first patrol on Tuesday.