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New radar detector trailer on order for Pacific

The Pacific Police Department is getting another tool to fight crime and protect the public.

The City Council on Monday approved the purchase of a combination radar detector trailer and message board to help combat speeders on city streets.

The $16,636 trailer – manufactured by Stalker Applied Concepts of Plano, Texas – is essentially a 48-by-96-inch LED reader board mounted on a two-wheel trailer. On board, a computer and radar speed detector record and store traffic information.

"You can park it in a location and it records speeds, times of day, the amount of traffic," said Police Chief John Calkins.

Calkins said the machine will primarily help the police better respond to complaints about speeders on residential streets.

"If we can, we send an officer out, but often there ends up being no violations," he said. "Now, I can put this out without any message, and it will register speeds. If we leave it out there for 24 hours, we should be able to tell if we should be out there at a certain time."

Although the machine records data, it does not have built-in cameras.

"It's not a like a red light camera or anything like that," Callkins said. "There is no identification built in."

The trailer also will be useful to the Public Works Department, a planned secondary use, Calkins said.

"If they do traffic counts, they usually hire a company to come in do them," Calkins said. "With this, we can put it out to get traffic volumes at certain times on specific dates."

Calkins said the City also plans to use the trailer as a simple message board when needed.

"We can use it for road closures or if there is an emergency management event," Calkins said. "We have the reader board out in front (of the public safety building) and we use that for public events, special council meetings or Pacific Days. This will be one we can set out on perimeter roads where the higher traffic is."

Calkins hopes the mobile radar detector helps make city streets safer.

"Right now we're still down a couple positions, so we're not always out there running radar like we should be," he said. "And parking this in a school zone will also help. I think it's going to be a great tool."

ALSO: The City Council approved the purchase of two new police vehicles at its Monday meeting. The City will buy a new Dodge Charger patrol car to replace the one totaled during a police-involved shooting earlier this month. The City will replace an aging 2000 Dodge pickup truck in service with a new two-wheel drive Chevy Tahoe interceptor.

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