Hill Air Force Base skate park temporarily closes

Hill Air Force Base, Utah -- A popular hangout for the children of Hill Air Force Base will be temporarily closed due to improper use of the facility.

The Hill AFB skate park was closed April 10 because skaters at the park have been failing to wear the proper safety equipment that is required for use of the park.

"The reason we are closing the park is users have not been complying with the safety regulations," said Maj. Richard Roberts, 75th Mission Support Group. "Helmets, knee pads and elbow pads need to be worn at all times when skating."

Major Roberts said that safety gear is a must for park users, especially because the park is not staffed.

"It's kind of an honor code thing," Major Roberts said. "There is no one to really monitor you, but if you use it, you've got to have the right safety gear on."

Major Roberts said the skate park is an extremely popular place for kids and the spring weather has made it even more so.

"The weather is nice now and the park has been pretty much full all spring," Major Roberts said. "It's been very heavily populated, but we have been getting calls from numerous agencies and people saying the kids aren't wearing their safety equipment."

Lt. Col. Kelly Clark, 75th Mission Support Group, deputy commander, said temporary closure of the park is better than having someone get injured as a result of not wearing safety equipment.

"We'd rather shut the park down for a while to make a point than keep it open and have a kid break an arm or leg, or worse," he said.

Major Roberts said the park should re-open during the next few days.

"We just want to make sure that word gets out to the folks who use it and then we will reconsider opening it," he said. "Because there is no staff on hand to enforce the rules, closing the park is really the only way to send the message."

Major Roberts also said parents are encouraged to support the safety rules of the park.

"We would encourage the parents to enforce the safety regulations if their kids use the park," he said. "If the parents get involved and make sure their kids are wearing their safety equipment, it will help a great deal."