2008-06-20 / Letters

Parks Employees Use Improper Tactics

Dear Editor, The following letter has been sent to Parks Commissioner A. Benepe.

I am a resident of Rockaway Beach. I live there and endure my 1 ½ hour ride to Manhattan every work day because I love the beach, all year round. When summer comes and daylight extends, I look forward to taking my three-year-old son onto the beach when I get home from work. Ever since your park employees have begun to patrol the beaches, this experience has been ruined. These patrollers race on their quads and I have to make sure my son doesn't get run over. Patrollers on foot with bullhorns shout at people to step away from the shoreline after 6 p.m. They set it to perpetually beep to harass people out of the water and off the

jetty. My son has his

requisite boogie board to go into the water (at the surfing beach) after 6 p.m. but obviously I need to be without one to teach him how to use his. To some degree, I understand this is your employees' job but they are not being trained properly. On this past Wednesday (06/11/08) one of these patrollers told me to watch my son and keep him out of the water because the day before a child "just like my son" was taken by the undertow and drowned. I have checked with friends who work in the local ER and local EMS/FDNY and (thankfully) no drowning was reported. This scare tactic upset me greatly, was downright wrong and needs to address. Please see that your employees realize that we go to the beach to enjoy it, not to be harassed. Thank You.


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