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Helsinki police to mount up on segways for mobile patrols

Instead of familiar blue and white police vehicles, residents of the capital Helsinki can expect to see law enforcement officers straddling segways – as soon as this weekend.

Poliisin uusi kulkupeli segway
Police will soon be seen patrolling the streets of the capital Helsinki on two-wheelers. Image: Antti Kolppo / Yle

Finnish police authorities have introduced segways - the two-wheeled self-balancing electric vehicles – to be used by police officers to perform their official duties.

The trendy transportation devices will first be trialed by officers in Helsinki. Officials hope the upright personal transporters will help police move about quickly and efficiently, especially in areas where access is difficult for traditional four-wheelers.

Earlier this week police treated Yle to a display of their brand new dark blue wheels with white police text in Finnish and Swedish.

Wet grass could slow officers down

Senior constable Kalle Da Silva Goncalves of the Helsinki police department said that the two-wheelers provided a smooth ride, but he speculated that some surfaces could slow police down.

"Probably wet grass or anything slippery could cause problems, but so far this machine has worked well on different surfaces, including uneven ones," Goncalves explained.

The Helsinki officer added that the manufacturer reckons that the vehicles' top speed is 22 kilometres per hour.

That gives the police more than a fair shake at catching up with wrongdoers - as long as they’re not travelling on four wheels.

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