Cry for help to tackle 'scourge' of nuisance riders risking lives in South Tyneside

The “scourge” of nuisance riders in South Tyneside must be stopped before someone is killed, council bosses have warned.

Police, councils and other organisations have been urged to work together to get a grip on the issue which has been a problem in the borough for several years.

But the public have also been called on to do their part by reporting the identities of suspected riders and where they could be storing their vehicles.

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Hebburn councillor John McCabe said: “I know it’s a very difficult subject, but I think it’s essential for all of us, the community, the council and the police, to try and stop this bike scourge before it causes a fatality.

Stock picture from Pixabay

“What’s happening is they are coming from the Gateshead area to Monkton village and through to the Crusher.

“Most are not insured or taxed, but they’re now starting to come on to the roads and we have evidence of the bikes doing 40-50 mph and it won’t be long before there’s a fatality.”

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Coun McCabe, who represents South Tyneside Council’s Hebburn South ward, was speaking at Monday’s meeting of the Hebburn Community Area Forum (CAF).

Coun McCabe added: “I’m putting it to the public, please use social media to get people to ring in with information to the police regarding where these bikes are being stored.

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Councillor John McCabe

“This problem will result in a fatality if we don’t take action.” The issue of nuisance riders is regularly raised at the borough’s CAF meetings and last year (2018) saw the council shell out almost £2,000 towards the costs of a “DNA spray” pilot scheme.

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The spray allows officers to “tag” vehicles, equipment, clothing or skin with a uniquely-coded, invisible dye which can later be used to forensically link tagged evidence, individuals or items to a specific crime.

Although the spray is still not believed to have been used in South Tyneside, in July, police said it had been an “effective deterrent”, with a decline in reported incidents since its introduction.

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But Northumbria Police has also stressed the force still needs information and intelligence from the public.