Local area commander for the Scottish Borders, Chief Inspector Vinnie Fisher provides an update on the work of his officers.

"A new year brings many of the same challenges for policing as we continue to serve the public as best we can, amid continuing financial pressures and tighter budgets.

"Nevertheless, we remain committed to ensuring that we are always available to the public whenever we are needed and by working closely with our key partners, we aim to keep on supporting a range of initiatives aimed at deterring criminal activity, improving community safety and enhancing the quality of life for all of those who call the Scottish Borders their home.

"One way in which we aim to reduce the tragic impact of drug deaths in our region is through the national roll-out of the life-saving treatment, Naloxone. This opioid reversal nasal spray is utilised by officers responding to a report of a drugs overdose and can potentially prevent a fatality from occurring.

Peeblesshire News:

"So far, Police Scotland has equipped and trained more than 4,000 frontline officers with Naloxone and it is anticipated that all Community and Response Officers will be carrying it in the coming months.

"While it is not guaranteed to save an individual’s life if they are suffering the effects of an overdose, it does provide a vital first aid intervention opportunity and has already spared numerous families and friends the heartache of losing a loved one to drugs.

"In addition to tackling drug crime and reducing the number of drug-related deaths within the Borders, addressing and preventing acquisitive crime remains one of our top priorities and, with the hours of daylight still reduced due to the time of year, I encourage all homeowners and property tenants to ensure they keep their homes secured whenever they head out or go to bed for the evening.

"Please also remember that your sheds, garages and other outbuildings are extensions of your home, so make sure these are locked up tight too. As always, our website has lots of useful information on crime prevention and personal security and this can be obtained by visiting www.scotland.police.uk.

"Just before the end of the year, we announced that officers now have access to an app on their police mobile devices, which connects them to the Bike Register national database. This means that any officer who comes across a potentially lost or stolen bicycle during their duties can check the database to establish the rightful owner.

"All bike owners are urged to register their bike on this database to enhance the possibility of it being returned in the event it is lost or stolen. Switching to motorised forms of transportation, I’d like to discuss the need for safe and responsible driving as the Borders continues to experience wintery conditions on our road network.

"Throughout December there were a number of severe weather warnings and we anticipate we’ll see a few more of these before we reach spring. In these situations, please only travel if necessary and pay attention to news bulletins, Transport Scotland and Police Scotland social media updates during periods of adverse weather.

"I am once again finishing my column with a plea to our communities to take the Your Police Survey, which can be found on our website. Your views and opinions are vitally important to helping shape our policing priorities and we genuinely welcome and appreciate your feedback."