The Port Washington Police Department is taking on a decidedly retro look.
The department‚Äôs newest squad car, a 2013 Chevrolet Impala, is causing heads to turn with its traditional black-and-white color scheme.
‚ÄúA lot of people noticed it right away,‚ÄĚ Police Chief Kevin Hingiss said. ‚ÄúSo far, everyone‚Äôs been positive about it.‚ÄĚ
While the look may be retro, the vehicle certainly isn‚Äôt. The car carries the complete line of accoutrements found in modern law-enforcement vehicles, including a laptop computer.
The department decided last fall to move away from the dark blue color scheme it has been using for years, Hingiss said.
‚ÄúThe majority of the officers had wanted it for quite some time,‚ÄĚ he said of the new color scheme. ‚ÄúFor me, I looked at it as something fresh and updated. It‚Äôs been a long time since we changed the look of the cars.‚ÄĚ
As the department replaces its older vehicles, the black-and-white vehicles will become standard.
The next vehicle to be replaced will be the Dodge Durango used by the department‚Äôs command staff. It will be replaced with a black-and-white Ford Interceptor, which Hingiss said is similar to an Explorer.
The new squad car has been on the streets for about two weeks, and officers have given the new look a thumbs up, Hingiss said.
‚ÄúThey like it very much,‚ÄĚ he said. ‚ÄúWe didn‚Äôt go with a totally retro, ‚ÄėAdam 12‚Äô look. It‚Äôs black and white, but a more modern black and white.‚ÄĚ
Still, there‚Äôs no mistaking the car when officers are on patrol or running radar.
‚ÄúIt really stands out. There‚Äôs no doubt it‚Äôs a police car,‚ÄĚ Hingiss said.
That, he said, is a good thing.
‚ÄúI think it‚Äôs better if we‚Äôre visible,‚ÄĚ Hingiss said. ‚ÄúIf the car is visible and people see us and know we‚Äôre out in the community, we‚Äôre less likely to have problems occurring.‚ÄĚ
PORT WASHINGTON POLICE Captain Mike Keller showed off the department‚Äôs newest squad car, which has a decidedly retro, black-and-white color scheme instead of the dark blue that has been used for decades. Photo by Sam Arendt