Local News

Attacks Raise Concerns, Awareness Along Durham Trail

Posted September 25, 2000 7:00 a.m. EDT

— Durham'sAmerican Tobacco Trailwas designed to encourage people to get outside and exercise. The city is now addressing serious safety concerns after a robbery and an assault on trail users.

In the past week, a man riding his bike on the North/South Greenway was hit in the head with a baseball bat. Another man was rollerblading with his wife when he was robbed at gunpoint.

While the crimes have raised concerns, the city believes they are isolated incidents, and they should not discourage residents from enjoying the park system.

"We've got many, many people who use those trails without incident and really enjoy the trail," says Lt. Ed Sarvis with theDurham Police Department. "We would never want just a few incidents to ruin people's enjoyment of those trails."

TheDurham Parks and Recreation Departmentsays it is always looking for new ways to improve the trail system. Several options are under consideration from improved lighting to installing emergency phones along the greenways.

Police say the attacks are a good reminder for people to take simple steps to protect themselves, such as being aware of their surroundings and not exercising alone.