Police officers at Gainesville, Florida were just preparing for the night as Hurricane Irma lashed the American state.
Officers Nordman, Hamill and Rengering posted a selfie on the Gainesville Police Department’s Facebook page before heading out to assist the affected people.
But they didn’t expect the post to bring about such a social media riot even as people faced evacuations, power outages and flood damage from Irma.
Ladies, not just from Florida but the world over, didn’t restrain themselves.
“I feel faint … send help!” said one. “I feel safer just looking at this picture,” another woman commented.
As the fans gushed, the Gainesville Police Department happily played along as users even asked about the relationship status of the three officers and demanded they release a calendar.
“We are dying with the comments. You’ve actually made our chief blush with some of them,” the department wrote in an update on the original selfie post.
Since September 11, the post has garnered close to 500,000 reactions, over 250,000 shares and lakhs of comments.
People lapped it all up as some claimed that “all the attractive men are in Florida…” and another suggested the officers shoot a calendar while others said:
Some got their creative juices flowing:
One praised the social media team at the Gainesville Police Department for their prompt, witty comebacks peppered with Gifs.
A Washington Post report said the spokesperson behind the social media magic is Ben Tobias, who made news this summer for criticising comments from President Donald Trump about police brutality.
This was not the first time the Gainesville Police Department has grabbed headlines.
In January 2016, a video of a Gainesville Police officer’s response to a noise complaint about a group of people playing basketball on the street went viral. Instead of being stern, the officer decided to play with along with them.
At the end of the video was the message: “So if you call GPD to complain about kids being kids ” “This is how Officer White is going to handle it. We’re going to let kids be kids. We are going to focus on the ones that commit crimes. #HoopsNotCrime”
The video even got a response from basketball legend Shaquille O’Neal, who paid a surprise visit to the Gainesville Police Department to praise officer Bobby White.
Seeing the barrage of reactions the post elicited, other police departments have followed their lead. The Sarasota Police Department posted a photo of a group of its officers posing around a rescue vehicle.