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Bikes seized from teens in mass crackdown on nuisance riders

PUBLISHED: 18:51 17 April 2019 | UPDATED: 18:51 17 April 2019

Police at the top of Regent Road. They are tackling the menace of teens on bikes amid a public outcry over the issue Picture: Liz Coates

Police at the top of Regent Road. They are tackling the menace of teens on bikes amid a public outcry over the issue Picture: Liz Coates

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Police have swooped on youngsters riding bikes illegally issuing a clutch of dispersal orders and seizing three bikes.

PC Andy Hunt is behind a cracktown on teens on bikes amid concerns they are putting themselves and others in danger Picture: Liz CoatesPC Andy Hunt is behind a cracktown on teens on bikes amid concerns they are putting themselves and others in danger Picture: Liz Coates

Some ten officers involved in a targeted operation said they were responding to growing reports of teenagers causing problems on bikes across the Great Yarmouth borough.

The response comes as footage showing a teen narrowly avoiding a van while performing a daredevil manoeuvre surfaced on social media this week.

In the first swoop officers tackled youngsters gathered on bikes close to Mcdonalds in Regent Road, a bus lane “hot spot” where fears had been raised over safety.

As part of a “robust” approach PC Andy Hunt, who organised the operation, said three bikes had been seized and four dispersal orders issued.

The parents of those who had their bikes taken away would be called in to collect them and be made aware of the problems and dangers.

Sgt Dan Smith said the action had been triggered by a public outcry over youths on bikes which had seen “extreme behaviour” including up to 30 riders at a time pulling wheelies and weaving in and out of traffic, even on busy main roads.

The trend he said was fuelled by social media, with mass gatherings arranged in an instant.

Public concern was increasing, he said, with bus drivers and businesses in the town centre calling for action and reports of pedestrians being almost knocked over.

In one incident a bus driver was injured when he was forced to slam on his brakes to avoid a daredevil cyclist.

“Someone is going to get hurt, either on a bike or in car,” Sgt Smith added.

PC Hunt warned bikes could be seized for the whole Easter break, adding: “We just want to get the message out there.”

The town centre and Regent Road were no cycling areas and cycling on the pavement and being in a bus lane were anti-social and dangerous.

Officers will be ready to respond to similar reports across the borough, with vans on standby to be deployed wherever they are needed.

The operation will run until around 10pm tonight, Wednesday April 17, and be repeated over the summer.

PC Hunt said not all the young people had been receptive but the response from the public was supportive, adding the operation had been a success so far.

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