The Agassiz RCMP have a new vehicle in their fleet, and it’s already earning its keep.
The detachment’s new UTV is a two-man, side by side all terrain vehicle, said Sgt. Stuart Falebrinza. While it’s been in the fleet for about a month, the first few weeks were spent training officers to drive it. But over the last week, it’s been put into service, and Falebrinza said it’s already helped nab drunk drivers off road. Over the weekend, they spent considerable time patrolling the east and west Harrison logging roads.
“We’ve already had a huge amount of success,” he said. “It’s allowed us to get into sites we normally can’t get to and that’s resulted in numerous impaired charges.”
It will also allow RCMP to get into areas normally not accessible by traditional vehicle with a police dog, or to transport items.
“We are now able to stop people we normally wouldn’t be able to stop,” he said. They will also be able to get through heavy traffic during events such as the Canada Day celebrations in Harrison Hot Springs.
“I think it’s fair warning to people in the back country that we now have a new mode of transportation,” he said, and they will be using it whenever possible. The aim is to decrease crime in the back country area, while increasing the area they can monitor. For example, RCMP will now have better access to areas where stolen vehicles are dumped.
The four-wheel drive UTV, a Polaris Ranger, is equipped with a rear storage box, police lights and has a special restricted plate.