DURHAM—Wednesday night, about 30 people came out to learn how to keep themselves safe along the American Tobacco Trail.
It was the launch of the Our Trail, our Town campaign.
Similar to a neighborhood watch program, the Trail Watch brings the community, Durham Police, and the Durham transportation department together to improve safety on the trail. In 2012, there have been more than a dozen reported crimes along the popular walking and biking greenway trail.
Several people at the meeting said they use the trail to commute to and from work every day. They said despite the recent attacks, they are not giving up the trail. Instead, they want to be a part of the solution.
Residents say they can help police by being an extra set of eyes and ears on the trail.
“I want to continue to use it. I want it to be in a safe way and I want to be engaged in the conversation, I don't think it is one person's problem,” said Durham resident Laura Webb.
“It's got to be a cooperation of users and the police department users. But the users have to know what to do and how to act and how to self-patrol,” said Durham biker Scott Douglas.
That is the basis of what people learned at the meeting. Police showed attendees how to know exactly where they are on the trail at all times, to constantly be looking at their surroundings and other people in the area, and most importantly, to call 911 if they see anything suspicious.
People say with the Trail Watch, they will help make the American Tobacco trail safer for everyone.