Call for action after ‘reckless’quad use

Residents of a Limavady housing estate want “action” on the reckless use of quad bikes, after claims of near misses involving residents and those behind the wheel.

The call comes in the wake of a number of concerns brought to DUP councillor Alan Robinson in recent days by people living in the Glenbank Walk area of the town.

Issuing a stark warning to those involved, Colr. Robinson spoke on the dangers of using quad bikes for recreation, stressing they are “powerful and dangerous” pieces of machinery rather than toys.

“I have been made aware by residents in the Glenbank Walk area that individuals are using quads in a reckless manner and, in one incident, on Tuesday evening a father’s two sons narrowly missed being struck by an individual using a powerful quad on the footpaths in that location,” said Colr. Robinson.

“Another neighbour has complained of a similar such incident on the same night whereby his son too came within a whisker of being hit and subsequently injured.”

Speaking out on behalf of residents after learning of a number of incidents whereby children came “within a whisker” of being struck by powerful quad bikes, he said: “Quads bikes are not toys, but rather a powerful and dangerous piece of machinery”.

Colr. Robinson says residents are demanding action on the anti social behaviour.

“Residents tell me that they have had enough of this anti-community activity and are calling for action against those involved. Quite rightly they are voicing their concerns that an accident will happen if this activity is allowed to persist,” he said.

“Like any piece of machinery, it is not the quad bike that is dangerous but rather the way it is handled. Unfortunately there are some who see these lethal items as play things but ignore the fact that they are designed for work on land rather than recreational use where children play.”

Colr. Robinson pledged to write to the PSNI “asking that efforts be made to dispose of quads from those who risk the lives of local residents and their children”. In the meantime, Sinn Fein Colr. Brenda Chivers, Sinn Fein’s East Derry agricultural spokeperson, said she is also aware of the concerns, and of the dangers posed by quads given her farming background.

“Some people don’t understand the danger of driving quads, especially in built-up areas. They can lose control and hit someone, or the quad can easily tip over so, their own lives and others are placed in danger,” said Colr. Chivers, adding: “I would appeal to people to be responsible.”