Tulare public safety takes action at limiting used needles

The city of Tulare has implemented several actions to improve safety at the Tulare Baseball park for children after a young boy was poked with a dirty syringe several weeks ago

TULARE – After a young athlete was poked by a dirty syringe at the Tulare Baseball Park in late March caught the eye of the city, there have been a number of actions implemented to ensure children’s safety. These actions include educational meetings, added surveillance and added security measures. 

“This is an ongoing issue,” City Manager Mike Mondell said. “We’re monitoring, and we’re making progress as we all agreed.”

At the April 19 Tulare City Council meeting, Mondell presented an update on the interactions and activities associated with the incident at the Tulare Baseball Park. The police department will patrol the area and respond to calls regarding trespassers including and up to arrest if necessary. This has been implemented by the city and is now in effect. The next action is that a park ranger will patrol the area on Saturday mornings before any games. Again, this has been implemented by the city and is ongoing. 

The police department is willing to offer training to parents and children on safety related matters. Another area that caused concern for citizens and staff was the dumpsters on the baseball association property. The league and the city are working together to develop signage regarding needle safety for placement around the ballpark. In addition to the signs, the league will speak to teams regarding the need for personal attention to safety matters. The league is also supposed to obtain quotes regarding potential safety related improvements, such as security cameras, to submit to the city for consideration of funding.

Mondell said that on Saturday, April 23, the police and fire department staff will be on site at the baseball park to provide educational materials regarding needles. This event will be from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the baseball park.

Interim Chief Dave Rossman said they will have a pop up tent providing information on how they handle situations involving needles and what individuals need to do if a similar situation occurs. They will be giving safety talks to all those who are interested. 

Mondell also said the public works staff has been at the facility painting red curbs, and re-marking crosswalks and stop bars, in addition to replacing faded signs in the area. The police department and the public works department helped “facilitate voluntary relocation of three encampments that were on the railroad right of way behind the baseball complex,” Mondell said. After the encampments were moved, staff helped pick up leftover items.

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