Personal Safety & Crime Prevention

Minimize your risk factors while in your MetroParks.

Carry a cell phone.

  • If you need assistance or encounter someone else needing assistance in the MetroParks, dial 911.
  • Employees and volunteers can also request assistance for you.

Secure your belongings.

  • Leave valuables at home. Bring only essentials, such as your keys, driver’s license and cell phone.
  • If you must leave valuables in your vehicle while in the park, hide them well before you arrive at the park.
  • Don’t leave belongings visible in vehicles.
  • Make sure vehicles are locked, and don’t hide your keys outdoors anywhere.

Take what you need.

  • Carry personal identification.
  • If you use a medication frequently, such as for diabetes or angina, take it and the instructions for use with you.
  • Stay hydrated. Bring a water bottle.

Be aware of your surroundings.

  • Take a map with you on trails.
  • Be easy to find. Use only marked, authorized trails.
  • If it’s necessary to call for help, be able to relay an exact location by knowing the nearest park area, intersection or major landmark.
  • Use all of your senses. Don’t wear headphones — they impair your ability to hear someone approaching you from behind. If you sense that an area may be unsafe for you, leave.
  • Always let someone else know where you will be going and when you will return, and instruct him or her to call 911 if you do not return as planned.
  • When possible, visit the park with a friend or in a group.
  • Avoid unfamiliar areas when on the trails alone.
  • It’s better to avoid dusk and darkness.

Share the trail.

  • Don’t take up the whole width of the trail; allow others to pass.
  • Communicate with other trail users when coming up behind them. Always pass on the left.
  • When you’re going downhill yield to those hiking uphill.
  • If you’re taking a break, move off of the trail to allow others to pass by unobstructed.
  • Observe “Leave No Trace” principles. If you brought it in with you, take it out with you.
  • Speak in a low voice and turn your cell phone volume down or off. Enjoy the sounds of nature, and let others do the same.
  • Walk through the mud or puddle and not around it, unless you can do so without going off the trail. Widening a trail by going around puddles is bad for trail sustainability.

Obey all park rules.

  • Please observe posted park hours.
  • Lost and found articles should be reported to park staff or a ranger.
  • Hikers are not permitted on horse or mountain biking trails.
  • Horses and bikes are not permitted on hiking trails.
  • You are responsible for your dog. Obey leash laws, and pick up after your pet.

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