BLAKELY, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — A local police department has added a new vehicle to better handle road closures and nighttime crime scenes.
The idea of the new emergency services unit of the Blakely Police Department is to provide increased safety at accident and crime scenes.
“Blakely Borough itself has its own electric company. So when there is a pole down or there is an issue with wires, in any other jurisdiction, PPL comes out and brings all their manpower, they do traffic control. Well, this borough unfortunately it is us, it’s the police. So we’ve always needed to have traffic control devices such as barricades and cones and things of that nature because we have to take care of that traffic control,” said Blakely Police Department Chief Guy Salerno.
The plan is to free up volunteer firefighters and ambulance personnel.
“We were utilizing fire department or the ambulance company for hours at a time for lights. So you’re tying up a valuable piece of equipment that just for lighting and volunteers they’ll be sitting out there for three hours,” said Chief Salerno.
The police chief tells Eyewitness News, because of the pandemic, many events in the borough were canceled. Money that was set aside to pay a police officer to provide security at such events was used to purchase the new van.
“If you’re trying to project light or if you’re trying to move light from the vehicle and get the scene where it is without the vehicle in it, you need that bright light from a distance or albeit have movable light. Which here we have a light tower that gives us a lot of light from above. And we also have lightstands that we can actually roll out from the truck and place in an area, so we can light a scene, and we can document it as needed,” explained Chief Salerno.
The borough hopes to have the vehicle on the road in the very near future.