The number of illegal off-road bikers causing anti social behaviour and injuries across South Yorkshire is increasing, according to South Yorkshire Police.
Police have warned that, over recent months, they have seen an increase in the numbers of reports received from different communities across South Yorkshire about the dangers, antisocial behaviour and negative impact illegal bikes are having on residents and the surrounding area.
To combat this, specialist trained officers have been conducting weekly operations in Sheffield, Barnsley, Doncaster and Rotherham.
Police are hoping this will prevent the use of off road bikes in unlicensed residential and rural areas, and reduce the number of injuries caused.
Inspector Darren Johnson, who has been involved in the development of the operation and action taken, has said: “We have been working in partnerships with local councils, to help train officers who will be using off road bikes to conduct patrols to catch offenders who are riding illegally, or causing disruption to the community.
“By working alongside councils we are now able to increase our presence within local communities, engage with legal riders to explain the purpose of the work, and reduce crime and potential threats posed to members of the public by illegal riders who may be causing injuries and community problems.
“Our aim through this partnership work is not to stop legal riders from using their bikes, it is to sign-post them to the licensed sites so they can safely ride on purpose built tracks away from footpaths and houses.
“We are also encouraging legal to stop and speak to officers conducting patrols so they can understand and ask questions about the operation.
“This is just the beginning of the operation, which will now continue across South Yorkshire and I hope local communities feel reassured that proactive steps have been taken to listen to and address concerns they are raising.
“Our main priority is to keep everyone safe and through partnership work, engagement activity and specialist developed operations like this one, we are working to achieve this.”
If you have any concerns or would like to report any incidents relating to nuisance illegal off-road bikes in your area, contact police on 101 or report it through firstname.lastname@example.org