Dirt bike riders spark concern in Albuquerque’s dry Bosque

Fire danger is high across New Mexico, but that risk hasn’t stopped some people from breaking the rules in Albuquerque’s Bosque.

No motor vehicles are allowed in the Bosque ever, however, neighbors say they keep seeing a few guys on dirt bikes riding up the bike path. 

Video obtained by KRQE News 13 shows three motorized dirt bike riders rolling down the paved pathway on the east side of the Rio Grande, north of I-40 and just south of Candelaria. 

A person near the pathway says they recorded it Sunday evening. They say they also heard the same bikes on Friday evening. 

A longtime Albuquerque cyclist, Geraldine, told KRQE News 13 she often sees motorized dirt bikes on the bike path, despite the fire danger. 

“Yeah I see ’em still,” she said. “How do you know they can read?” 

Even if the bikers claim they didn’t know the rules, the concern they present is obvious. Albuquerque Fire Rescue often restricts motors in the Bosque during the summer months because engines can produce sparks. 

“If they’re dirt bikes, they’re in the weeds and if there’s a spark and right now the Bosque is in real bad shape,” said Steve Arndt, who was riding a bicycle in the Bosque Monday. 

During a news conference last week, Albuquerque Fire Rescue estimated it’s already dealt with about six fires in the Bosque this summer. 

“Some of the fires, if there is good wind, can spread almost as fast as someone can walk,” said Chief Paul Dow of the Albuquerque Fire Department. 

The city’s Open Space Division told KRQE News 13 that motorbikes and motor vehicles in the Bosque isn’t common, but they say anyone who sees it should call 242-COPS. 

Neighbors and other Bosque uses hope it’s the last time they’ll see dirt bikes in the Bosque. 

“I think it would devastating because I think a lot of people especially that live around here,” said Hannah Martinson, who was walking in the Bosque Monday. 

The city is now using camera trailers from the Albuquerque Police Department to monitor the Bosque, especially near Tingley Beach where most of the Bosque fires have occurred so far this year. 

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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