Community wardens get on their bikes

Westmeath County Council has come up with an environmentally friendly approach to its presence in the community, with the launch this week of a community warden bicycle patrol.

Hybrid bicycles, which can be used both on and off road, will provide extra flexibility to wardens across the county’s towns and villages to patrol a wider area than previously.

The scheme will also allow urban areas including parks and other leisure areas to be patrolled in a more environmentally friendly manner.

The new bicycle patrol forms a major part of the council’s environmental protection effort. Duties of the wardens will range from environmental awareness, control of litter, pollution prevention, identification of derelict sites, and promotion of the Green Schools initiative, to control of casual trading, assistance to community and voluntary groups, and control of horses and dogs.

County manager Daniel McLoughlin says the initiative will ensure more efficient service provision by the council.

“It will ensure that the Community Warden Service will be more visible and accessible to the community at a very local level. It is hoped that this will offer a reassuring presence in the community and that the residents will get to know their community wardens,” he said.

The initiative forms part of the council’s commitment to national climate change and energy efficiency policies. The introduction of the community warden bicycle patrol will contribute to the quest for a greener and safer Westmeath, and will reduce this council’s carbon footprint by an estimated 11 tonnes of CO2 emissions per annum.

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