Group motorcycle rides – even for charities – have been banned in one UK council area unless riders inform police and the local council first.
Harlow Council in Essex has banned motorcyclists in groups of two or more from riding together between 10am and midnight until April 2017 without council or police approval. The first ride affected was a memorial ride to honour a young student.
The move smacks of the VLAD “bikie crackdown” in Queensland where certain riders were not allowed to ride or associate in groups of more than two and the police even wanted all group rides registered with them.
While the situation in Queensland was an Orwellian move to monitor for an infiltration of so-called outlaw bikies, the UK ban is simply to prevent some riders “annoying” the public.
It seems the council decision is in reaction to some riders speeding, pulling wheelies and other stunts or making too much noise with aftermarket exhausts.
“Anyone breaking the injunction would be in contempt of court and may be sent to prison,” the council website says.
Surely police and transport officials could just do their job and fine those with loud exhausts and anti-social riding behaviours, rather than applying a blanket ban on all riders.
It’s the thin edge of the wedge when a local council can impinge on one of our basic freedoms to move around just because someone might offend.
It’s like banning everyone from shopping because some people shoplift.
However, it seems a minority of anti-social riders in many countries are fostering ill feeling with authorities that could result in similar injunctions for all riders.
We’ve seen bans on riders in some areas of the Mid East and Asia over similar behaviour as well as criminal activity such as purse snatching and shootings.
In New York recently the council streamed video of bulldozers crushing impounded motorcycles and quad bikes that were confiscated from hoon riders.
Check out the following boring video. The action doesn’t start until the 30-minute mark.
We wonder what sort of tactics authorities will next employ that will impact on innocent riders as a consequence of cracking down on a few anti-social riders?