The Myrtle Beach Police Department will add another trained motorcycle officer after he trains in this Spring’s session of motorcycle riding technique.
Officer Lloyd Winner will be the department’s fifth motorcycle officer. Wednesday marked his eighth day in the department’s two week in-service training.
“It’s definitely one of the most challenging courses I’ve experienced in the four years that I’ve been here,” said Winner.
It’s 80 hours of cone courses, high speed safety techniques, and learning how to control the bike.
Corporal George Johnson knows how important this Spring’s motorcycle training session is to the safety of the officers and the community, because four years ago Friday, he was there.
“I was approaching a green light at 16th Avenue North and Kings, and a motor vehicle failed to yield on a left turn, I struck the front of the vehicle, as it made its turn at approximately 52 miles an hour with the blue lights and sirens going through a green light,” he described.
The course aims to fully prepare officers to keep safe on the bikes while they keep the community safe, at the same time.
“Whether it’s low speed or high speed, they understand the principles behind the motorcycle, how the motorcycle operates, and how to operate it safely within the parameters of what we do,” said Johnson.
For Winner, it’s a chance to better connect with the community.
“I feel like you get more personal contact with them, because you can roll up and you can talk to them,” he said.
Johnson says it’s the most difficult course in police work, but one part stands out.
“No matter how many times I’ve done this, no matter how many courses I’ve done, I still hate the cones. It’s just one of those things,” he said.
If chosen, officers trained with the program will travel to Daytona, Florida for another two-week course before they get on the road.