Revved-up youngsters who illegally ride motorcycles in Kirkcaldy will “undoubtedly” kill somebody if they continue to flout the law.
Graeme Neill, community sergeant for Police Scotland, is calling on the town’s residents to unite and assist officers to put the brakes on young riders who continually take to the streets on motorbikes and quadbikes, after a two-year-old was mowed down by a motorbike in Templehall this week.
Fortunately the child suffered only minor injuries as a result of the collision, which happened on Tuesday afternoon on Templehall Avenue.
However, both police and members of the community are keen to tackle the problem before anyone else is seriously hurt or even killed.
The issue of off-road biking has blighted certain areas of the Lang Toun for years with most of the problems centering on the town’s public parks at Dunnikier and Ravenscraig.
However, Templehall has also suffered serious problems with illegal riders this summer, with both an elderly woman and a young girl said to have experienced “narrow escapes” recently, in addition to the injured toddler incident this week.
Sergeant Neill said unless the youngsters hang up their helmets, real harm could be done.
“It is obvious that the speed these riders travel at along the footpaths and pavements of populated areas are incredibly dangerous,” he said.
“Their reckless behaviour will undoubtedly result in serious injury or death to an innocent pedestrian and would be something they would have to live with for the rest of their life.
“The police are working hard to trace the individuals involved, we have increased patrols and enhanced our CCTV coverage in areas within Templehall that will be used to record incidents and hopefully assist in identifying the offenders.”
Underage bikers have also been a long-running problem in the town, particularly in the light nights of summer.
Last year the problem escalated further, with police reporting that some underage riders were taking to public roads, including Dunnikier Way.
Sergeant Neill said: “Recently a number of calls were received by the police in relation to two youths seen on off-road bikes riding around the pavement and grass areas of Templehall Avenue.
“One of the riders narrowly missed knocking down a young girl walking on the pavement and another almost collided with an elderly resident who was walking on the pavement at the time.
“The bikes involved were orange and black in colour with two young males wearing silver and black helmets.”
Last year a “masterplan” was unveiled to help prevent youths from illegally riding motorcycles in Dunnikier Park.
While this has had some success, the problem now appears to have moved on to other nearby residential areas such as Templehall.
However, appealing to residents to play their part, Sergeant Neill said legal riders could be stopped from endangering themselves and the public.
“The best way to tackle this matter is by the community coming together to tackle the problem.”