Mini-motos cause buzz of complaints

PUBLISHED: 11:30 03 August 2006 | UPDATED: 21:14 29 May 2010

Riding mini-motos is only legal on private land – with the owner’s permission – and at organised events like the one pictured here

Riding mini-motos is only legal on private land – with the owner’s permission – and at organised events like the one pictured here

A SPATE of complaints about miniature motorbikes – known as mini-motos – has prompted a stern warning from Dunmow police to nuisance riders. The first complaint, reported to police last Friday, was of a child riding around Newton Green on a mini-moto a

A SPATE of complaints about miniature motorbikes - known as "mini-motos" - has prompted a stern warning from Dunmow police to nuisance riders.

The first complaint, reported to police last Friday, was of a child riding around Newton Green on a mini-moto at 10am.

Police were called out later the same day for a different incident, this time involving two 20-year-old men riding up and down White House Road, Stebbing, on a mini-moto at 5.15pm.

In a third incident, reported on Sunday, a mini-moto was being ridden on the Tilty playing field at 4.20pm.

Complaints nationwide have drawn the promise of a serious crackdown from Home Secretary John Reid.

Although laws are not set to change, the government has given £200,000 into enforcing current regulations on them around England and Wales.

It is illegal for these to be ridden on pavements, public highways or parks.

Those still riding mini-motos should think again as they also run the risk of prosecution, or even having their machine crushed if the courts choose to order so. Reckless moto riders can even gain penalty points on their driving licences - those who have not yet got a licence will have the points transferred when they do.

Essex police spokesman Peter Laurie said: "They're not only illegal on the road but the riders are putting themselves at great risk. They're not wearing crash helmets and if there's an overgrown hedge or a driver in a big vehicle it's very easy for them not to be seen and is very dangerous."

Mr Laurie added: "It can be a very costly experience, the price being their lives."

A man who was involved in an altercation with two teenagers riding a motorised scooter has called for 'grass roots' action against the nuisance.

Stephen Brown, of Stebbing Road, Felsted, who was cleared of assaulting the boys (see Broadcast, July 20) said this week: "I understand it's a government thing but it must get to 'grass roots' and get the local bobby on the beat taking action for the initiative to have any success.

"Since my ordeal many people have come and told me they too have noticed these nuisance motorised scooters and mini-motorbikes being ridden illegally.

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