Councillors are calling for bollards to be installed at the Waverley Walk to prevent vehicles from using the popular footpath.
The plea from Hawick and Denholm members Watson McAteer and Stuart Marshall comes in the wake of reports from Burnfoot residents that the area had been damaged on Saturday night.
Councillor McAteer told the Hawick News: “The walkway was covered in mud and debris.”
Councillor Marshall added: “Watson and I both received complaints that vehicles had been using the footpath late on Saturday. After speaking to residents we were approached by Police Scotland who admitted they were responsible.
“Apparently officers attended an emergency call and used the Waverley Walk to reach the scene quicker.
“While we fully appreciate the need to attend calls quickly, we are concerned that a popular footpath is being used by vehicles.
“We have discussed access to the footpath near to the leisure centre and have asked council officers to arrange for bollards to be fixed to control vehicular access in the future.”
A police spokesperson said: “Officers were involved in a large-scale search for a missing man, and it was established that he may have headed to the Waverley Walk area, and so a police vehicle was used to aid the search.
“This resulted in some damage to the grass verge due to the soft ground conditions, though, thankfully, we found the missing man safe and well.
“We have since met with local councillors and Scottish Borders Council to discuss the damage to the grass and all parties were supportive of the installation of bollards.”