NEWARK, NJ – Newark authorities plan to step up efforts to force the removal of illegal dirt bikes and ATVs from the city as warmer weather approaches.
Encouraged by noise complaints and concerns from local residents, Newark Mayor Ras Baraka and Public Safety Director Brian O’Hara announced that the restarted operation had already resulted in the seizure of nine dirt bikes and nine ATVs.
“This is a problem not just in Newark, but in cities across the country,” O’Hara said during a press conference Monday. “What we hear from local residents all the time is that this is seriously affecting their quality of life … The vehicles are very loud and noisy.”
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Whether it is a group of drivers or a single person driving an all-terrain vehicle down a sidewalk or one-way street, authorities said local residents have also raised concerns about their safety.
By stepping up efforts to address local residents’ concerns, the public safety director said the new initiative achieves two goals: letting people know that the activity in Newark City will not be tolerated and its illegal use Curbing vehicles as a driving activity will certainly increase as the warmer weather approaches in the coming months.
When asked if authorities noticed an increase in reported incidents of illegal SUV use during the lockdown at the start of the pandemic last year, O’Hara told TAPinto Newark that there has been no significant increase in incidents, but officials want it to be Thwart potential of it happens.
“This summer is going to be extremely important in Newark City because people want to go outside and do things outdoors,” he said. “We just want to be able to send a message early on that you can’t do this on the city streets.”
One person was also arrested for obstructing law enforcement and resisting arrest during the operation. Police also said 59 motor vehicle summons were issued in connection with the use of dirt bikes or ATVs.
“Newark residents deserve safe roads, and ATV and dirt bike riders often come here from other cities to compromise that safety,” Baraka said in a statement. “Aside from the public nuisance they cause at night – cranking their engines and pounding wheelies when residents are trying to sleep – the drivers of these illegal vehicles usually try to ‘take over’ a neighborhood as their personal rally trail. It is important that the police have these vehicles removed from our streets. “