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MPD Officers Promote Bike Safety for Kids-Video & Slideshow
Posting Date: 05/22/2012

By Barbara Ellestad
Mesquite Police Department officers Jeff Smith, left, Justin Goodsell, and Scott Taylor, spent time helping teach kids proper bike safety. Photo by Barbara Ellestad.

Mesquite Police Department officers Jeff Smith,
left, Justin Goodsell, and Scott Taylor, spent
time helping teach kids proper bike safety.
Photo by Barbara Ellestad.

Why would you promote a race to see who could go the slowest and come in last?

If you're the Mesquite Police Department, teaching elementary school kids how to be safe on a bicycle, you would do it to help them learn how to balance themselves without falling down.

That and other important lessons of riding bikes was the goal of Virgin Valley Elementary School Physical Education Director Leon Durbin, who organized a day long teaching event at the school on Monday, May 21.

On hand to help him were MPD officers Lieutenant Scott Taylor, Mike Van Houten, Jeff Smith, Justin Goodsell, and Darin Wilkins.

Durbin, the police officers, and other teachers, set up the training to teach the children skills that would help prevent accidents while they enjoy one of American's great past times this summer.

Smith also mentioned that the MPD was resurrecting its own bicycle patrol that may put more officers on two wheels versus four, especially during special events and around school zones.

"Officer Justin Goodsell is responsible for trying to get our bike patrol program off the ground. Lieutenant Taylor has also been instrumental in making sure our officers get trained. We've had three or four officers take the training and we're trying to get a couple more enrolled,"

Smith explained.

He demonstrated the specially outfitted bicycles that MPD has with flashing lights, sirens, and silent tires and gears. "The 10-speed bikes with the installed equipment will allow officers to go where they need to and also mingle among crowds at special events."

"Coach Durbin decided to revive this event and we're just here to help him," VanHouten explained about the program that was once a staple of community outreach for the MPD. "He took care of all the logistics with the help of the other teachers. He's also a certified bicycle pedestrian safety instructor."

"We set up five stations that help develop different skills for the kids," VanHouten continued. "This is a controlled environment in which they can learn what they need to safely. Out on the streets they're not in a controlled environment. It's a more dangerous place to learn."

"Of course, the parents are still responsible for their kids knowing the proper things to help them be safe," he added. "And the parents need to make sure their kid's bikes are operating properly and that they have helmets. We're just here to help them learn a little more about bike safety."

"We'll do the instruction today," Van Houten remarked. "Tomorrow we'll do a real bike ride around the school."


  • Posted Date: 05/22/2012
    Once again, there is MPD helping the community! It never fails and it never ends. I can't imagine anyone in Mesquite could find fault with the group of dedicated men & women who work at Mesquite PD. All of you are so lucky to have them working for you and caring about you!
    By: Robert W. Everett
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