Off-road bikers received a shock at the weekend when members of the Dunstable, Houghton Regis and Leighton Buzzard Local Policing Teams carried out an operation across Central Bedfordshire to curb the issue of nuisance motorists.
Bedfordshire Police has been encouraging members of the public to help identify nuisance motorcyclists in an attempt to crack down on the number of people who think that it is acceptable to ride motorbikes, quad bikes, mopeds, scooters or mini-motos in a dangerous way across public land.
On Sunday (Jan 26), a number of those responsible for creating such issues came face-to-face with officers who were assisted by the Priority Anti-Social Behaviour Team, a vehicle examiner and officers from Hertfordshire Police riding off-road motorcycles.
The team issued a total of nine Section 59 Orders to riders and the 11 eleven bikes that were being ridden.
Insp Jim Hitch, of the Central Local Policing Team, said: “Operation Meteor is a long running effort by Bedfordshire Police to combat the nuisance created by all motorists who find it impossible to drive or ride their vehicles in accordance with the law.
“Officers were able to take full advantage of Section 59 of the Police Reform Act 2002 which gives them the ability to stop anti-social motorists and warn them about their behaviour as well as issuing fines and seizing their vehicles.
“What was a major concern on the day though was seeing one rider – who sadly evaded officers – riding his bike with a small child riding pillion who was not wearing any protective clothing or a helmet.
“We are doing all that we can to identify this individual who clearly had a complete disregard for his or his passengers safety.”
Insp Hitch added: “One of the issues that we do have is not being able to chase after every single nuisance motorcyclist but by providing information such as names, addresses or where the vehicle may have been previously, we can build up a picture of the offenders and take appropriate action.
“Riders need to realise that this sort of behaviour is unacceptable - not only is it an offence, but it is also extremely dangerous for others. These riders need to understand that if they ride their motorbike in a park or somewhere else that they shouldn’t they will receive a warning or have their motorbike seized and possibly destroyed.
“Anyone caught riding on pavements or roads illegally could also be dealt with for motoring offences such as riding without a licence and having no MoT or insurance. My message to parents considering buying a motorbike or similar vehicle for their children to use off road is simple: unless you have permission for your children to use it on private land – don’t do it”.
Anyone with information concerning nuisance vehicles can contact Bedfordshire Police on the 101 number or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111.