Security Corner with Bob Williams: Running Safety

Every week, Colby Director of Security Robert Williams writes about a security issue that may affect the student population.

Now that the new academic year has started and students are back, many are taking advantage of the nice weather and running outside.  To ensure everyone makes it back safely from their run I want to remind you of the running tips below offered by the Road Runners Club of America as well as a note regarding the Colby running trails.

DON’T WEAR HEADPHONES. Use your ears to be aware of your surroundings. Your ears may help you avoid dangers your eyes may miss during evening or early morning runs.

Run against traffic so you can observe approaching automobiles. By facing on-coming traffic, you may be able to react quicker than if it is behind you.

Look both ways before crossing. Be sure the driver of a car acknowledges your right-of-way before crossing in front of a vehicle. Obey traffic signals.

Carry identification or write your name, phone number, and blood type on the inside sole of your running shoe. Include any medical information.

Always stay alert and aware of what’s going on around you. The more aware you are, the less vulnerable you are.

Carry a cell phone or change for a phone call. Know the locations of public phones along your regular route.

Trust your intuition about a person or an area. React on your intuition and avoid a person or situation if you’re unsure. If something tells you a situation is not “right”, it isn’t.

Alter or vary your running route pattern; run in familiar areas if possible. In unfamiliar areas, such as while traveling, contact a local RRCA club or running store. Know where open businesses or stores are located in case of emergency.

Run with a partner. Run with a dog.

Write down or leave word of the direction of your run. Tell friends and family of your favorite running routes.

Avoid unpopulated areas, deserted streets, and overgrown trails. Avoid unlit areas, especially at night. Run clear of parked cars or bushes.

Ignore verbal harassment and do not verbally harass others. Use discretion in acknowledging strangers. Look directly at others and be observant, but keep your distance and keep moving.

Wear reflective material if you must run before dawn or after dark. Avoid running on the street when it is dark.

Practice memorizing license tags or identifying characteristics of strangers.

Carry a noisemaker. Get training in self-defense.

When using multi-use trails, follow the rules of the road. If you alter your direction, look over your should before crossing the trail to avoid a potential collision with an oncoming cyclist or passing runner.

 CALL POLICE IMMEDIATELY if something happens to you or someone else, or you notice anyone out of the ordinary. It is important to report incidents immediately. If on campus call Security, 859-5530 or off-campus call 911.

  Colby students need to be cautious when running on the trails on campus and stay on the marked Colby trails. This is especially important for the trails off the power lines between Lincoln Street and Washington Street. Much of the property on each side of the power line is privately owned and the landowner does not want people trespassing on his property. Let’s be respectful of their property and privacy.   

Anytime you have a concern, you can call Security, 859-5530.