It’s both National Police Week and National Transportation Week and DART’s all about looking out for your ride. This week on DART Daily, learn more about our police officers and how DART continues to take you to your destinations on this week’s “Your Ride, Our Lookout” series.
A Role That’s Ever-Changing
Lt. Don Hyder has been with DART Police for nearly 15 years, and in all his years on the force, he says every day is different.
“There really is no such thing as a typical day in law enforcement,” Hyder said. “You encounter different people, different situations and different circumstances. It’s constantly changing, and some days are better than others.”
As a DART police officer, your day-to-day job involves a great deal of public interaction. And that is what Hyder enjoys most about the job.
“As a police officer, sometimes you serve as a counselor, other times as a coach. You may be a defender one day and a paramedic the next,” Hyder said. “But every day you have the opportunity to help people in need. Protect the weak. Inspire a community. Make a difference.”
DART police are responsible for covering a 700-square mile area, including rail lines, bus routes and facilities, such as rail stations and bus transit centers. They also work closely with police departments in DART’s 13 service area cities.
While there are many challenges in policing today, Hyder believes there also are opportunities for building trust.
“Trust is not inherent because I am a police officer. Trust is earned and my job is to earn the public’s trust,” he said. “You can earn that trust by being a visible face in the community and listening to their concerns.”
Community engagement is one of the many roles a DART Police officer plays. Annually, the department gives 120 “Let’s Help Keep DART Safe” presentations throughout North Texas. They also host National Night Out at DART headquarters. And they participate in Coffee with a Cop – a relatively new initiative that brings police officers and members of the community together over coffee.
Three words he uses to describe his job as a DART police officer are: humbling, rewarding and inspiring.
Nothing brings more joy to Hyder than a member of the public saying, “Thank you for what you do.”
For more information about DART Police, visit DART.org. Stay tuned to this week’s “Your Ride, Our Lookout” series to learn more about our police officers and how DART gets you to your destination.