The Mountain Bike Patrol Unit is comprised of officers who have attended rigorous police specific mountain bike training. Officers picked for this unit, from among volunteers, undergo a one-week training course conducted by the International Police Mountain Bike Association. Pursuit tactics, contact and cover, fitness, mountain bike maintenance and community policing are all topics covered by this intensive course of instruction.
The police mountain bike has proven to be a very useful law enforcement tool. A police officer on a mountain bike is able to respond more rapidly to some calls for service and in many instances can travel in areas a scout car cannot. An officer on a mountain bike can also patrol areas in a less obvious and stealthy manner. Police mountain bike patrol is most effective in Ferndale during large gatherings such as the Woodward Dream Cruise, Pride Fest and the Ferndale Art Fair. The mountain bike allows officers the ability to travel among large groups of people confined in relatively small areas while maintaining the capacity for a rapid response to incidents.
Lastly, the mountain bike gives officers the opportunity to forge a closer relationship with the community. An officer on a mountain bike is more approachable and less intimidating to the general public.
Approximately half of the Ferndale Police Department patrol unit is police mountain bike certified.