Depositing sand in skating parks to prevent users from flouting social distancing amid the pandemic has been a means by which local governments have cracked down on young adults and teenagers.
However, it does not always go as planned.
Hours after Polish Hill Skate Park was filled with sand to deter potential skaters, a pile of sand was dumped outside Pittsburgh City Hall–in what appears to be an act of retaliation.
— Ben Schmitt (@bencschmitt) May 8, 2020
According to The Blaze, Pittsburgh Department of Public Works Director Mike Gable, the city had already tried to lock up the park, but to no avail as avid skaters would climb over or cut the lock.
Gable said: “We don’t take any pride or pleasure in doing this.”
He continued: “The park is closed and we kept the gate locked, but they cut the lock or the chain or they hopped over the fence. People have to listen to what the directive is and the directive is social distancing.
“We don’t take any pride in closing facilities. They’re great assets, but there is a directive out there and when it’s not being followed, it creates a problem.”
“The area that the skate park is in is a very tight, confined space. The number of people using it was extraordinary and that’s why it was closed,” he concluded.
According to Public Safety spokesman Chris Togneri police were investigating the mound of sand left in the Pittsburgh City-Council Building doorway.
In the California town of San Clemente, skaters cleaned up after similar measures were taken to prevent skaters from congregating at the park.
National File reported:
Amidst the coronavirus pandemic, many local governments are taking increasingly extreme steps to enforce social distancing measures, including filling skate parks with sand to dissuade use.
It’s not the first time the government has tried to crack down on skater culture, and like most past efforts to force skaters to conform to the status quo, it seems to be backfiring massively.
One video posted to Twitter shows a small group of skaters calmly and methodically shoveling away government sand into buckets.
In a video from a different day, one man drives a dirt bike around the new government-created dirt bike track.
As mentioned, some even turned the sandy park into a dirt bike track, reinventing the deterrent.