OFFICERS in Chester are clamping down on the illegal use of off-road motorbikes, mini motos and quad bikes.
For some time people have been using these bikes on the Lache Adventure Playground and surrounding areas – causing nuisance for local residents.
It was thought they were exempt from prosecution as the land was believed to be private.
But further research by Chester City Council has shown it owns the land and as such Cheshire Police are entitled to take action.
Sergeant Anton Sullivan of Chester Outer Neighbourhood Policing Unit said: “We have been experiencing consistent problems with mini motos and off-road bikes in this area. Now we have clearance from Chester City Council we will be taking action.
“Police have the power to seize vehicles that are used in a way which causes harassment, alarm or distress, even if the rider has tax and insurance.
“If anyone is caught breaking the law we will take positive action on every occasion and the bikes will be seized under Section 59 of the Police Reform Act. Vehicles can also be seized if the rider is not insured or doesn’t have a valid licence.”
He added: “If the vehicle is unregistered at the time of seizure and they cannot get insurance, they will not get it back – it will either be crushed or destroyed.”
Although the issue is currently a problem in Lache, officers will be on the lookout for bikes being used anti-socially in other areas of Chester and they will not hesitate to take action.
Sgt Sullivan added: “The message is clear – if you value your bike, don’t use it illegally or in an anti-social manner. We will be out and about and, where necessary, we will seize vehicles and prosecute the owners.
“We will also be working with partner agencies, including Chester City Council, Chester County Council and Chester and District Housing Trust to improve awareness, restrict access to open areas and to ensure anyone using these types of bike illegally is reported to us.”
If you see bikes being used in an anti-social manner, or have information in relation to the issue, contact the Chester Outer NPU on 0845 458 6375.
This number has a voicemail facility and is regularly checked for new messages.