Sept. 17, 2021 By Christian Murray
Mayor Bill de Blasio sent out a strong message Thursday to the owners of illegal dirt bikes and off-road vehicles who are tempted to operate one of them in New York City: “Don’t even think about it,” he said. “Because the NYPD will find it and will crush it.”
De Blasio and high-ranking members of the NYPD held a press conference at a Department of Sanitation site on Staten Island yesterday, where they demolished more than 40 unregistered dirt bikes and off-road vehicles.
“These dirt bikes are dangerous,” he said. “They can endanger the lives of the people around them — anyone in the neighborhood,” de Blasio said. “We need to make clear that we’re just not going to tolerate this kind of illegality, and here’s a very visual way to get our point across.”
We have a message for anyone driving an illegal dirt bike in New York City:
We’re gonna crush it. pic.twitter.com/kkdRY557J8
— Mayor Bill de Blasio (@NYCMayor) September 17, 2021
Authorities say that there has been a significant increase in the number of illegal dirt bikes in use this year, which has led to deaths and injuries. For instance, in New York City during the first three months of 2021, eight people reportedly were killed in dirt bike or off-road vehicle incidents.
Officials estimate that as many as 3,000 bikes will be removed from New York City streets this year, compared to about 500 last year.
The bikes are not just causing problems in terms of road safety, noise and pollution but they have also been used in several shootings and crimes, officials said.
The bikes have several characteristics that make them illegal and therefore unlawful to ride.
Any bike that lacks side mirrors, brake lights and/or turn signals is unable to be registered with New York state—and is therefore illegal to ride.
Residents are urged to submit tips about where illegal bikes are being stored, either by phone— 1-800-577-8477 (TIPS), or 1-888-577-4782 (PISTA) for Spanish— on the Crime Stoppers website, or by texting 274637 (CRIMES) then entering TIP577. Police say all calls are kept confidential.