Sullivan County

Authorities cracking down on ATV use at area park

KINGSPORT, Tenn. - A local park is cracking down on people who use motorized vehicles there.

Workers at Bays Mountain Park in Kingsport say that's because motorized vehicles, like ATVs are ruining park property. "New trails are being cut, trees have been cut down," said Fred Hilton, Bays Mountain's Senior Naturalist. "So the damage being done to the park is beginning to be severe. We're getting a lot of complaints from park patrons, people who hike, people who mountain bike."

Hilton said ATVs and motorcycles have been using the park illegally for years, but now the damage is so bad they can no longer turn a blind eye. "We're not against four-wheeling, four-wheeling is fun," said Hilton. "It's a fun sport, but Bays Mountain Park is a nature preserve, it is to be protected, it's not to be used for uses like that."

Hilton said that right now they're working on repairing the damage already done.

As for preventing this from happening in the future, Hilton said they're putting up signs to remind people that motorized vehicles are prohibited at Bays Mountain Park.

Police will also be stepping up patrols in the area.

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