SpringWatch campaign heats up

More off-road bikes seized, as SpringWatch campaign heats up

Following the recent re-launch of the SpringWatch campaign, which aims to clamp down on anti-social behaviour during the lighter evenings, Merseyside police have confirmed that more illegal off-roaders have been stopped in their tracks.

Now in its sixth year, the SpringWatch campaign sees St Helens Council, Merseyside Police and Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service join forces to target issues such as off-road vehicle nuisance which often increases when the clocks go forward.

Reports had been received of a Suzuki motorbike with no registration plate being ridden on Cherry Tree Drive in Parr.

Following enquiries, the bike was located in an address in Cherry Tree Drive and the bike was recovered on suspicion of being stolen. A 17-year-old male has been issued with a Section 59 warning in relation to anti-social use of motor vehicles.

Meanwhile, a further two bikes were seized by police last week after a bike was found abandoned in woods just off Broad Lane, Bold - and another  at the rear of the Evergreen Way estate, New Bold.

Colette McIntyre, Anti-Social Behaviour Manager for Safer Communities at St Helens Council, said: "We hope that these latest seizures act as a warning to those thinking of riding off-road bikes that we take this offence very seriously and we will be on to you.

"Not only is riding an off-road bike illegal, it is also extremely dangerous, with those responsible not only putting themselves at risk, but also members of the public - including families, dog walkers and young children.

"If you see off-road vehicles out causing a nuisance in the community, please report it to the Police on 101. This type of behaviour will not be tolerated.

Neighbourhood Inspector Elaine Collins said: "These recoveries are further proof of the success against the anti-social and dangerous use of scrambler bikes in St Helens. Reports from the public suggested that this bike was causing a nuisance to local residents, and were acted upon by officers. Operation Springwatch is running during April to make our communities a safer place to be, and we would encourage any members of the community to report similar concerns."

"We are keen to know who the users of such vehicles are, where they are stored and the details of any vehicles they are using to transport themselves from place to place. This is so that we can visit them in their homes and exercise our powers to rid our roads and open spaces of these vehicles. With your help we want to make life safer and more peaceful for all residents."

To report an off-road bike, please call the police via the 101 number, or dial 999 in the event of an emergency or if there is a crime in progress. Alternatively, people can pass information anonymously to Crimestoppers, 24 hours a day, on 0800 555 111.

For more information about the SpringWatch campaign visit www.safersthelens.org.uk