‘Idiotic behaviour’: Auckland mayor Phil Goff slams unruly motorcyclist mob

Auckland mayor Phil Goff has slammed an idiotic mob of illegal motorcyclists who are terrorising the city’s roads, condemning their “irresponsible behaviour and flagrant disregard” for people’s safety.

It comes as videos emerge showing large groups of motorcyclists riding unregistered dirt bikes dangerously on the city’s motorways and roads over the weekend, pulling wheelies, doing burnouts and blocking traffic.

“This sort of reckless and idiotic behaviour puts the health and safety of the community at risk and those responsible need to be held accountable,” Goff said.

“Police are following up any and all leads from the public and I encourage anyone with information that could help identify those involved to report it by calling 105.”

National’s police spokesperson Simeon Brown also condemned the group.

“These illegal motorcyclists have been spending time in East Auckland over the weekend terrorising motorists and blocking intersections,” he said in a Facebook post.

He urged people who could help identify the riders to contact police.

Angry Auckland motorists are also fed up, with many hitting out yesterday at the lawless motorcyclists.

Footage has emerged of one rider, wearing no helmet or protective gear, pulling a wheelie on a dirt bike for more than 12 minutes – some of it through the entire 4.2km length of Waterview Tunnel.

A separate video shows a group of riders without helmets – one of them shirtless and astride a quad bike – travelling en masse down Mt Roskill’s Richardson Rd.

They were among multiple videos posted to social media, showing the riders taking over the streets around Māngere Bridge, Hillsborough and Lynfield on Waitangi Day.

Another video showed the group blocking off the northwest-bound side of the Southwestern Motorway near the Hillsborough Rd exit, with riders doing burnouts blowing thick smoke through the building traffic.

The mass ride was organised for Waitangi Day and promoted through a number of social media accounts, many using the term “bikelife”.

One outraged resident complained to the Herald about the group’s antics.

He and his wife had been returning from visiting family south of Auckland, when they encountered the group near Tip Top corner on Saturday afternoon.

“We saw hundreds of them on the empty motorway just after the Highbrook off-ramp … following them was all the regular motorway traffic.”

Another said the group had often been seen around East Auckland pulling wheelies, with no helmets or registration plates.

Other complainants were furious that the riders had been allowed to travel about the city without being arrested, and criticised police.

“It was bloody disgusting how these thugs were left to do what they wanted,” one said.

Another said the sight was a “common occurrence” on his commute through the city.

“I’m a rider, so it makes me cringe every time I see them riding around in shorts with no helmets on,” he said.

“These guys are really going to hurt themselves at some point – or someone else.”

A police spokeswoman said the officers involved were not available on Monday for comment, as it was a public holiday.

Police were aware of the dirt bike ride involving “a large number of motorcyclists in Auckland on Saturday and were monitoring the situation”.

“Many of the bikes involved are not designed to be ridden on sealed roads and the riders have shown a blatant disregard for other road users and their own safety,” she said.

“Any offending identified will be followed up and investigated.

“Anyone with information that can assist identifying those involved is asked to contact police via 105 and quote event number P045406921.”

She was not aware of any arrests or fines handed out on the day.

In January, the Herald reported that motorcycle deaths had hit a 25 year high in the prior 12 months – with than 57 fatalities.

It came as taxpayers had footed a $103.8 million bill from 4306 ACC motorcycle injury claims in the last year.

The sales of motorcycles were estimated to reach 9000 in 2020 – the highest in the past decade.

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