Council consider task force to tackle ongoing scrambler problem

by Mark O'Brien
A cross-agency meeting was held in an attempt to tackle the misuse of scrambler and quad bikes.

South Dublin County Council (SDCC) have said that they may consider setting up a county-wide task force to tackle the issue of anti-social behaviour on scramblers and quad bikes.

The issue was raised by Cllr Francis Timmons at the recent meeting of the Clondalkin Area Committee of SDCC

In his motion, Cllr Timmons said: “The behaviour is causing ongoing distress to many residents, it is both anti-social and a dangerous behaviour.”

In response to Cllr Timmons’ motion, the council issued a report saying that it was acutely aware of long standing problems related to scramblers and quad bikes.

The report added that measures had been taken in an attempt to combat that problem.
These measures included the erection of 1.2 metre high fencing along the side of green space areas, installation of bollards and an awareness campaign launched ahead of Christmas 2016 asking parents to make sure that they were aware of the legal requirements related to the use and operation of such vehicles.

The council’s parks and open spaces byelaws state that any mechanically propelled vehicle – including scramblers and quad bikes – are not allowed on parks and open spaces.
Under the byelaws these vehicles can be removed by An Garda Siochana.

The council report acknowledged that there may be difficulty in prosecuting offenders and suggested that a task force may be set up to tackle the problem.

The report stated: “While it is acknowledged that there may be/is difficulty in bringing successful prosecutions, the council passed a motion at the January 2017 council meeting calling for the introduction of primary legislation to regulate ownership and use of vehicles.
“The Minister for Justice’s reply at that time indicated that such legislation would require a review of road traffic legislation and the communication had been referred to that Department.

“As no response was received from the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, a reminder was recently issued to his office.

“As the problem is not limited to the Clondalkin area, it may be appropriate that the potential establishment of a county wide task force be considered jointly by the Environment Public Realm and Climate Change and Land Use Planning and Transportation SPC.”

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