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Vehicle nuisance and dangerous driving

By Louise Moore

Published In: Personal Injury

South Yorkshire Police have ramped up their efforts to clamp down on anti-social bike riders across the region.

A spokesman said: “There is an increasing trend of younger riders out on the streets. The youngest stopped so far being a ten-year-old on a 140cc pit bike. No safety gear, just out on the estate on his own.

“This seems to be fuelled by social media platforms with video after video glorifying illegal riding and gangs stealing bikes then being chased by police.

Police in Barnsley are trying to identify a group of off-road vehicle riders who threatened officers and caused "significant damage".

Around 15 people on motorbikes and quad bikes blocked the Barnsley Road area of Cudworth at about 5pm on Sunday 14 April.

A quad bike rider rammed a police vehicle, South Yorkshire Police said, with the group becoming "abusive and threatening" towards officers. The group also caused damage to street furniture and a local pub. The riders are believed to be from the West Yorkshire area.

Louise Moore , personal injury representative at Switalskis said: “Given the number of people and vehicles involved in this particular incident, it’s lucky that no one was seriously injured. 

“Illegal motorcycles and quad bike riders can pose a real danger to other road users and pedestrians and can often seriously threaten public safety. Riders of such vehicles are urged to consider the dangerous or reckless use of a vehicle which not only risks injury to themselves but other road users such as cyclists and pedestrians.

“It is also against the law to ride quad bikes in public parks or on publicly-owned land without permission from the local authority. Furthermore, persons riding a quad bike on a footpath, bridleway or restricted bridleway could also be guilty of an offence under the Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000 . Even if someone has permission to ride a quad bike on land, if they are found to be riding “dangerously” or “carelessly” they would be guilty of an offence even when they are driving off-road.

“We urge members of the public to get in contact with the Police if such incidents do arise so that appropriate action can be taken”.

Stay road legal

Illegal ownership and riding of motorcycles and quadbikes poses a real danger to other road users and public safety.

There are a numbers of laws about owning and riding motorcycles and quadbikes to be made aware of.

Think before you buy. If you’re thinking of buying a quad bike or motorbike, it is your duty to make sure the seller is the legal owner, and to acquire public liability insurance. Riding a motorcycle in a public area is an offence and can lead to fines, penalties and disqualification. You can also face a civil claim for damages and injuries.

Become road legal. If the vehicle is approved for road use, it must also be registered with the DVLA, have visible front and rear number plates, and a valid MOT certificate if more than three years old. The driver must also hold a driving license and have completed the appropriate CBT course.

Rules for off-road riding are less strict, however deciding what constitutes a road can be tricky. You will also need the landowners’ permission if riding on private land. Under Section 192 of the Road Traffic Act a road is defined as ‘any highway and any other road to which the public has access’.

Whilst the term highway isn’t defined in the Act, case law suggests that it can be defined as any place where public are afforded right of way on foot, riding or accompanied by livestock. Under Section 59 of the Police Reform Act 2002 vehicles being used in a manner which causes alarm, distress or annoyance can be seized and warnings will be placed against the rider for 12 months.

Contact Us

If you have been affected by vehicle nuisance and dangerous driving our team can help you. Road traffic accident compensation claims can seem complicated, but understanding them doesn't need to be. 

We’re committed to unravelling complex legal jargon into clear, easy-to understand language. We answer your queries, simplify what's complicated, and make sure you understand each stage of the process fully.

Contact us today and let's start your journey towards recovery together. Call our road traffic accident solicitors on 01302 320621 or email


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Louise has over 25 years’ experience in the legal sector. She is the Portal Co-ordinator in the Personal Injury department.

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