National School Bus Safety Week

2015105624f033e4676This week (October 16-20) is National School Bus Safety Week and the WFPD would like to remind you of the following safety tips:

If you’re driving behind a bus, allow a greater following distance than if you were driving behind a car. It will give you more time to stop once the lights start flashing.

It is illegal in all 50 states to pass a school bus that is stopped to load or unload children.

According to Texas statute, a driver – traveling in either direction on a roadway – must stop when approaching a school bus that is stopped and operating a visual signal.

The driver may not proceed until the school bus resumes motion, the operator is signaled by the bus driver to proceed or the visual signal is no longer activated.

If a road is divided only by a left-turning lane, drivers on both sides of the roadway must stop for school buses with alternating red flashing lights activated.

However, if the lanes are separated by an intervening space or physical barrier, only motorists traveling in the same direction as the bus are required to stop.

The area 10 feet around a school bus is the most dangerous for children; stop far enough back to allow them space to safely enter and exit the bus.

Be alert; children often are unpredictable, and they tend to ignore hazards and take risks.

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WFPD participates in annual White Cane event at Beacon Lighthouse.

white cane dayOfficers with the Wichita Falls Police Department participated in the National White Cane event alongside visually impaired members of our community. White Cane Safety Day celebrates blind and visually impaired people’s achievements in the United States every October. It also reminds people about the how the white cane is an important tool in helping the blind and the visually impaired live with greater independence.

National Night Out Oct 3rd

NNO 2017_ 2This year’s National Night Out is scheduled for Tuesday October 3rd.  If your neighborhood is planning on participating and would like an Officer with the Wichita Falls Police Department to come by and be a part of your event please contact Sergeant McClure at (940) 720-5016.

Also, did you know that over 6,700 Wichita Falls residents have joined the Wichita Falls Police Department on Nextdoor.com to get to know their neighbors and to take a stand against crime.  There are more than 80 established Nextdoor neighborhoods within the city.  Chances are you live in or near one.  If not, please visit http://www.nextdoor.com and sign up.  It’s free and simple.  Iphone and Android apps are also available.

logo-white-largeHere is what Nextdoor.com is all about:

Nextdoor is the private social network for you, your neighbors and your community. It’s the easiest way for you and your neighbors to talk online and make all of your lives better in the real world. And it’s free.

Thousands of neighborhoods nationwide are already using Nextdoor to build happier, safer places to call home.

People are using Nextdoor to:

  • Quickly get the word out about a break-in.
  • Organize a neighborhood watch group.
  • Track down a trustworthy babysitter.
  • Find out who does the best paint job in town.
  • Ask for help keeping an eye out for a lost dog.
  • Find a new home for an outgrown bike.
  • Finally call that nice man down the street by his first name.

Nextdoor’s mission is to use the power of technology to build stronger and safer neighborhoods.

We look forward to seeing everyone on National Night Out October 3rd.

National Coffee with a Cop event to be held at local McDonald’s.

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On Wednesday, October 4th, 2017, officers with the Wichita Falls Police Department and community members will come together in an informal, neutral space to discuss community issues, build relationships, and drink coffee. The event will be held at the McDonald’s at 4035 Southwest Pkwy from 8 am until 9:30 am

Coffee with a Cop provides a unique opportunity for members of the community to ask questions and learn more about their department. It allows for relaxed interactions where citizens can feel comfortable voicing concerns or asking questions. So come on out drink some coffee and strike up a conversation with the police officers.

Cybersecurity Incident & Important Consumer Information

Cyber-Security-2The Wichita Falls Police Department’s Financial Crimes Unit is wanting to make sure everyone is aware of a recent cyber attack against one of the leading consumer credit reporting agency and steps that you can take to help ensure that your identity is protected.

According to Equifax, “on July 29, 2017, Equifax discovered that criminals exploited a U.S. website application vulnerability to gain access to certain files. The company promptly engaged a leading, independent cybersecurity firm which has been conducting a comprehensive forensic review to determine the scope of the intrusion, including the specific data impacted. Equifax also reported the criminal access to law enforcement and continues to work with authorities. Based on the company’s investigation, the unauthorized access occurred from mid-May through July 2017.”

To see if you were possibly affected click here and follow the instructions.

For further information regarding this you can visit the Equifax information page by clicking here.

Virtual Kidnapping Scam Hits Local Couple

download.pngOn 09-08-17, a local husband and wife had separately been contacted by “kidnappers” alleging that the other had been kidnapped. The kidnappers were making monetary demands and the couple, who could not reach each other, were frantically trying to meet those demands. Both were found safe and no kidnapping had ever taken place.

Investigation discovered that they had become victims of a scam known as a “virtual kidnapping”. In this scam, victims are contacted over the phone by scammers who are attempting to manipulate them into believing their loved ones have been kidnapped – in an attempt to quickly extort ransom payments.

Be aware and do not fall for this type of scam. If you receive such a call, contact your relative immediately to ensure his or her safety and then call police.

Deadline to Apply to be a Wichita Falls Police Officer is Friday, September 9

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“A career in Law Enforcement will provide you with years of opportunity for personal and professional development, community involvement and the ability to have a positive role in the safety and security of your fellow citizens.” -WFPD Training Unit

CLICK HERE TO APPLY – ONLINE APPLICATION

CLICK HERE TO PRINT THE PERSONAL HISTORY STATEMENT

Application Deadline-09/09/17

Testing Date- 09/23/17

For more information, please visit wfpdnow.com or wfpd.net/hire

National Night Out Scheduled for October 3rd

NNO 2017_ 2National Night Out is an annual community-building campaign that promotes police-community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie to make our neighborhoods safer, more caring places to live. National Night Out enhances the relationship between neighbors and law enforcement while bringing back a true sense of community. Furthermore, it provides a great opportunity to bring police and neighbors together under positive circumstances.

Millions of neighbors take part in National Night Out across thousands of communities from all fifty states, U.S. territories and military bases worldwide. Neighborhoods host block parties, festivals, parades, cookouts and various other community events with safety demonstrations, seminars, youth events, visits from emergency personnel, exhibits and much, much more.

This year’s National Night Out is scheduled for Tuesday October 3rd.  If your neighborhood is planning on participating and would like an Officer with the Wichita Falls Police Department to come by and be a part of your event please contact Sergeant McClure at (940) 720-5016.

We look forward to seeing everyone out there.

Share the Road

sharetheroadThe Hotter’n Hell 100 is fast approaching which means the presence of more cyclists on the roadway.  The Wichita Falls Police Department reminds motorists to share the roadway and be aware.  Here are a few safety tips to remember:

  • Bicyclists have the rights and duties of other vehicle operators:(551.101)

Yes, this means you have to stop at stop signs and red lights, but cars are required to yield right-of-way to a bicycle when appropriate, just as to any other vehicle.

  • Ride near the curb and go in the same direction as other traffic: (551.103)

Near the curb is subjective (we recommend leaving a cushion of about three feet) but the law gives a cyclist the right to take the lane when necessary for safety.

  • At least one hand on the handlebars (two are safer): (551.102c)

One when signaling but two when turning works well.

  • Use hand and arm signals: (545.107)

Point the way you are going, let the other operators know what you want to do.

  • One rider per saddle: (551.102a)

Don’t let your friends share your bike while riding unless you’re both on a tandem.

  • You may ride two abreast as long as you don’t impede traffic: (551.103c)

Racing and taking the lane are special cases.

  • Must have a white light on the front and a red reflector or red light on the rear (for riding at night): (551.104b)

The light is primarily so people can see you coming from the side, where their headlights do not shine on your reflectors. The law, effective as of Sept. 2001, states that a red light can replace a red reflector.

  • Brakes capable of making the braked wheel skid: (551.104a)

Don’t test that front brake to see if the wheel will skid while riding, especially downhill.