Bike cops in Wakefield are warning illegal off road riders they are planning to turn up the heat this year after putting more rogue riders before court in 2018 than ever before.
Wakefield District Police’s Operation Matrix Off Road Team is looking to build on a highly successful 2018 which saw it seize 96 off road bikes and either charge or report 43 people for summons.
It also issued 68 Section 59 directions to leave and issued 41 tickets to persons seen riding illegally or dangerously.
The team was established in 2015 and in its first year seized 52 bikes and reported or charged 17 people.
Since then it has built up its profile within the Wakefield area, both by working closely with PCSO’s to target patrols based on their local intelligence and through social media.
The team has been receiving increasing amounts of intelligence from residents through social media and email.
It is hoped the results will get even better in the months to come following the expansion of the Matrix Team this month.
The team is in the process of tripling in size from two to six officers and has been bolstered by the addition of two new Honda CR250f motorcycles to the fleet.
The investment in officers and equipment allows the unit to provide seven days a week coverage.
Chief Inspector Martin Moizer of West Yorkshire Police, said: “Our Matrix officers had their most successful year ever in terms of prosecutions in 2018 and the expanded capability they now have provides them with a brilliant platform to go even further this year.
“They are now operating seven days a week, morning and afternoon significantly enhancing what is already a major asset and very successful asset for the Wakefield District.
He added: “The team’s Twitter account continues to be ever popular and is obviously followed by local people based on the messages the officers receive offering information and support.
“When they are out and about they are also regularly approached by local residents who generally seem to be fed up with the bikes/quads are will offer any assistance they can.
“All this has obviously been a great help in locating and seizing vehicles and we continue to urge residents to keep getting in touch.”
You can follow the Operation Matrix Team on Twitter via the handle @WYP_WKBikeCops