After a number of complaints, police in Bromley are launching a crackdown on unlicensed bikes, mini-motos and off-road bikes being ridden dangerously in the borough.

Local safer neighbourhood teams will be working with Bromley Council, parks security and the News Shopper to tackle the problem.

Borough Commander Chris Hafford said: "Such vehicles cannot legally be ridden on the public highway without proper tax and insurance and it is also against the law to ride them in public parks, open spaces or on footpaths, pavements, cycle routes and bridleways. 

"Illegal motorcycling can be dangerous and lead to accidents.  The sheer power and speed of these bikes and mini-motos is dangerous wherever they are used.  Young children simply do not have the skills, the strength or the reaction speed to be able to handle motorised vehicles.  

"Where we believe the vehicles may be stolen, my officers will be executing search warrants and making arrests for criminal offences.

"Under the Police Reform Act, we can seize motor vehicles that are causing alarm, distress, or annoyance to members of the public."

News Shopper:

He added: "Parents or adults who are involved in the use of these vehicles should be aware that they can be prosecuted for aiding and abetting an offence, for which they can get up to six points on their licence.  

"I'm asking them to stop their children riding them before they kill someone or cause a serious injury."  

The facts:

  • It is illegal to ride motorcycles/mini-motos in parks or on pavements and other public highways and it is illegal to ride motorbikes on private fields without the landowner's permission.  
  • Current legislation to tackle the problem of nuisance caused by mini-moto misuse gives police officers the power to seize and crush such vehicles.
  • Offenders can also be subject to prosecution, with a fine of up to £1,000.
  • A driving licence is needed to ride a motorcycle and it must be taxed. 
  • Learners cannot ride a bike over 125cc until they pass a test, unless they are over 21 and on a direct access course.
  • Insurance is needed for a motorcycle to be in any public place, whether it is being ridden or only pushed. 
  • A test certificate is needed for motorcycles over three years old, if being ridden or even if only being pushed on a road. 
  • To be on a road, a motorcycle needs all the usual equipment to be fitted and working - eg lights, brakes, brake lights, horn, speedometer, good tyres etc. All this is required even if the vehicle is only being pushed.

News Shopper:

If anyone has any information about the people riding these bikes, where the bikes are being stored and when they are being used, please contact your local neighbourhood police team or crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111. 

Information can be passed on to the News Shopper anonymously as well.