CHILDREN and teenagers using quad bikes and small motorbikes to speed along footpaths at up to 50kmph are causing havoc in residential areas on the north side of Cork, it has been revealed.
Mayfield residents say the issue has gotten out of hand in recent months, and have called on Gardaí to intervene.
The matter was raised at this week's meeting of the Mayfield, The Glen and Ballyvolane Community Safety Forum.
Deputy Lord Mayor and local Councillor Joe Kavanagh said the quad bikes and motorbikes are proving hazardous to residents, particularly young children, the elderly, and anyone with mobility issues.
“It's an ongoing issue and it seems to be particularly problematic in the Avonmore Park area. Residents walking out their gates are taking their lives in their hands,” he said.
“This is happening all the time now and it needs to be stopped. These seem to be toys aimed at children and young teens but they go as fast as 50mph which is incredibly fast, especially when you consider a lot of them are whizzing up and down on the footpaths and pedestrian walkways.” Cllr Kavanagh said he would be worried for the welfare of smaller children who routinely play in the estate, fearing they could be seriously hurt if knocked down by one of these quad bikes.
“It is something that needs to be addressed.” Commenting on the issue, Garda Superintendant Mick Comyns said that according to the law a person must hold a valid driving licence if they are operating any mechanically propelled vehicle – even ones marketed as toys.
Furthermore, he said anyone driving a mechanically propelled vehicle on a public road must have insurance for the vehicle.
Gardai have been made aware of the issue and are set to monitor it in the coming weeks. An update to the situation is set to be prepared for the next meeting of the area's Community Safety Forum, which is due to take place in April.