A COUNCILLOR has warned that a child could be hurt or even killed unless something is done about motor menaces tearing through a play park.
Peterlee town councillor Derrick Sillito says hoodie-wearing and balaclava-clad youths on off-road bikes are plaguing the park between the town’s Hampshire Place and Warwick Place.
He says despite the efforts of police, he is at the end of his tether with an endless cycle of officers catching culprits and seizing their bikes – only for the yobs to buy new ones.
Police say they are increasing patrols in the area in a bid to track down the problem bikers and they have issued several anti-social behaviour notices against off-road motorcyclists.
Coun Sillito said: “If they hit a child they will kill them. It’s an accident waiting to happen and has been going on for months.”
Peterlee Police say they do respond to reports of motorbikes at the site.
But Free Association for Independent Representation (FAIR) representative Coun Sillito says by the time police arrive, the bikers have vanished.
The Acre Rigg ward councillor added: “The bikes are racing through the park.
“They are also flying past the park on the pavements nearly every night and on weekends.
“As you can imagine, there will be young bairns in the park, and I want parents to be extra careful.
“You can’t close the parks – the bairns will only be on the streets, it’s down to putting some plan together to catch the bikers.”
Peterlee Police Inspector Dave Coxon said since meeting with Coun Sillito a few months ago, the East Durham Area Action Partnership has funded extra patrols by Durham Police’s motorbike section in a bid to catch the culprits.
He added that in one weekend alone recently, three off-ride bikers in East Durham were issued with anti-social behaviour notices.
He said: “We will be continuing to target these individuals to prevent them from using their motorbikes in an anti-social manner, conducting further patrols in the area around the times that Coun Sillito and other members of the community have told us there is a problem.”
People should ring 101 to report the bikes, giving as much detail as possible so police can track down the culprits.