The offender who strung wire at neck height across a Queensland forestry trail to “trap” riders faces a three-year jail sentence if caught.
Gympie trail rider Ben Bird, 25, says he could have been decapitated if he was riding any faster when he hit the wire in Amamoor State Forest earlier this week.
Luckily Ben was only travelling about 15km/h when he hit the wire trap.
“Normally in that spot of the track it’s a flat straight. I could be going up to 60 to 70km/h there,” he says.
“The wire had been tied in a slip knot so when you hit it, it pulls tighter.”
Man trap offence
The offender who set the wire “man trap” could face up to three years in jail.
Queensland Police are investigating with the Department of Environment and Science as the offence took place in a state forest.
A spokeswoman for the Department of Environment and Science says they take public safety matters in national parks and state forests “extremely seriously”.
“Rangers work closely with QPS to patrol national parks and any instances of dangerous and illegal behaviour will be dealt with,” she says.
“It is an offence under the Forestry Regulations to do something that interferes with the health and safety of a person.”
It is also an offence under the Criminal Code 1899 – Section 327, namely “setting mantraps”, with a maximum sentence of three years.
Motorcyclists have long been vulnerable to “man traps” such as rope or wire strung across a road, and oil or tacks strewn on the road surface.
Sometimes it is done by misguided and angry residents trying to slow down or deter riders in their area.
The last time we heard of a similar incident was in December 2015 when a Perth rider hit a rope strung across a forest trail.
Lawson Mills, 19, believed it was set by “skylarking teenagers”.
Luckily the rope was not tied off at both ends, although he still suffered severe rope burns on the neck.
Other cases involve a Sunshine Coast farmer throwing oil on a road to stop speeding riders and tacks deliberately thrown on a Brisbane road shoulder to puncture the tyres of riders. (Edge or shoulder filtering is legal in Queensland only.)