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WBNS-10TV Columbus, Ohio | Columbus News, Weather & Sports |

Ohio State increasing bike patrols as school year begins

In recent weeks, Ohio State has issued several campus crime alerts after more than a half dozen armed robberies on campus and nearby.

In recent weeks, Ohio State has issued several campus crime alerts after more than a half dozen armed robberies on campus and nearby.

As students start the fall semester at Ohio State, police are taking new measures to keep students safe.

More officers are abandoning their cruisers for bicycles as OSU police will increase bike patrols.

Officer Marge Risalvo said the new bike patrols are about more than a visible police presence.

"You engage and you're present and you listen and you hear what their concerns are,” Risalvo said.

OSU police have added at least two bike patrols to every shift and this week the police chief is meeting face-to-face with students to listen to concerns and share safety ideas.

Bike patrol officers say not only are they making students feel safer but campus area traffic congestions means the bikes often beat the cruisers to a call for help.

Officer say an encounter as simple as providing directions is an opportunity to remind students police have their backs, but everyone needs to make smart safety decisions as students head back to class.

OSU offers a safe ride program that's free of charge to students from 7 p.m. to 3 a.m. to help ensure no student has to walk alone in the dark.

To learn more about the program, click here.