Traffic Police Officer (Constable)

Published: 14 October 2001

Name: Chris Pulfrey. Age: 44. Salary: £20,000 plus overtime (£28,000 after 14 years service). Hours: 40 per week, plus one weekend in four. Special Requirements: You need to be a qualified police officer with at least three years experience and pass a three-week Police Motorcycle Response course. Work Bike: Honda Pan European ST1100. Bike Extras: Sirens, radios, first aid pack, extra lights, fire extinguisher, VASCAR speed calculation device, breathalyser, moustache.

After 22 years as a Traffic police patrol man at the South Yorkshire Central Traffic Motorcycle wing, Chris Pulfrey has pretty much seen it all.

" I’ve done everything from the race riots to the mining strikes. I do general traffic duties, bike training, convoys and escorts and lots of promotional and educational activities. There’s no such thing as atypical day. " But let’s face it, traffic police aren’t the most popular of public servants and with such a heavy work load what makes someone want to do the job?

" You have a lot of freedom. The morning and evening rush hours are the busiest period but after that as long as your working you get left alone. Everyone has an avenue of policing they focus on - be it disqualified drivers, speeding offenders or car crime. "

So if you fancy a crack at being a motorcycle police officer yourself be prepared for a long hard slog to get there - a vigorous selection process, two years probation, several years on the beat and in the cars and then maybe, just maybe.

" After 12 months working in the car group you can apply for a job on the bike wing if a vacancy arises. But it’s very much a case of stepping into dead man shoes. People don’t tend to leave the bike wings. "

And even if you do get in, it can seems a thankless job.

" Some days it can seem like everyone you speak to has a bone to pick.. ‘Haven’t you got anything better to do? Why don’t you catch some proper criminals?’ People don’t like being criticised, they don’t likebeing told what to do. "

For more info contact: 0114-220-2966