Staff Writer MANCHESTER - The Manchester Police Department hopes to have a brand new cruiser on the road soon.
The selectboard approved $18,000 for the car. About $16,000 will be paid directly for the car, with the other $2,000 for a radio system and a back seat cage.
"What we used to do is replace a police car every three years. Every year we would buy a car and rotate it out," said John O'Keefe, Manchester Town Manager. "We've spent between $28,000 and $32,000 over the last several years to replace police cars. We are hoping that we can make cars last longer by keeping them better maintained and they will hopefully last up to five years."
The new police car, a used Crown Victoria, will be equipped with a new radar unit, surveillance system, and technology that can be used to scan buildings for hot-spots.
The MPD will be getting rid of an older Chevrolet Impala that was never meant to be used as a police car, said Police Chief Mike Hall. Why not purchase a brand new police vehicle instead of an older model?
With the current fleet of police vehicles for the police department well maintained, it makes more sense to purchase an older Crown Victoria with updated technology now for about half the cost, use it for two to three years, then have enough money to invest in a newer police vehicle, Hall said. The car will be used as a patrol unit, primarily working on traffic safety. It will not be used as an undercover police vehicle, Hall said.