The Sayre Borough Police Department is one of the latest area groups to take advantage of the power of social media to quickly inform residents.

In just over a month, the department's Facebook page has received nearly 1,100 likes. Officers use the page to post information about wanted individuals, safety reminders and community notices, said officer Travis Snyder, who set up the page.

The department decided to try Facebook after seeing the success of other local departments in utilizing it to locate those with warrants out for their arrests, Snyder said. Since the page's founding in late October, Snyder said Sayre police have found similar success with locating wanted individuals using Facebook.

The page also publicizes little-known services the department performs. Police officers can unlock vehicles free of charge and check houses for residents while they are on vacation, two services recently advertised on the page. "A lot of people don't realize that," Snyder said.

Snyder posted a house check form on the page that residents fill out to request police checks when they are about to be away for an extended period of time. Some knew about the service, but Snyder said he felt Facebook was the best way to notify new residents and those who live in South Waverly Borough, which the department has covered for a few years.

Publicizing the services has greatly increased their use and brought it to more people's attention, Snyder said. Since the post, "our house checks are nonstop, which is a good thing," he said.

Officers also recently used the page to notify those coming to last week's Sayre Christmas Parade of parking restrictions prior to the parade's kickoff and reminded those celebrating the recent holiday to use a designated driver.

The page "makes it a little easier for the community to see what's going on," Snyder said.

Amanda Renko can be reached at (570) 888-9652; or email: