Every day while driving to work, school, or running errands, people will run into police officers patrolling the streets of their hometown. There are many other operations that make up the daily duties and assignments of a police officer. Police operations can range from investigating a homicide or fraud to serving warrants for drug dealers or traffic violations. Police have a challenging job that is almost never routine.
Patrolling the streets is the center of policing in the United States. Most officers are assigned patrolling duties for daily assignments. Police officers deliver the majority of their services by patrolling the streets. Patrol officers are first responders and will always be the first ones to respond to any situation, from a fender bender to a terrorist attack. According to National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States (2004), “On the morning of September 11, 2001, the last best hope for the community of people working in or visiting the World Trade Center rested not with national policymakers but with private firms and local public servants, especially the first responders: fire, police, emergency medical service, and building safety professionals” (para. 1).
Patrolling is done in a variety of methods of transportation or afoot. Officers are able to patrol by horse, bicycle, afoot, motorcycles, recreation vehicles, marine vehicles, and aircraft. Most departments have the manpower to provide a full range of patrolling methods, but the most common method is the officer driving his patrol car. “Automobile patrol provides more efficient coverage than foot patrol. A patrol car can cover more area, pass each point more often, return to particular spots in an unpredictable manner if necessary, and respond quickly to calls for service. The efficiency of the patrol car in this regard is the reason why police departments converted from foot patrol to car patrol between the 1920s and the 1950s” (Walker & Katz, 2008,...