I and my party colleague, John Curran TD, have begun the process of preparing legislation to bring to the Dáil to give Gardai the powers they require to combat the scourge of Scramblers and Quads in residential areas.
The Bill that we have begun preparing is designed to give Gardai powers they do not have:
- The power of entry to people’s property for the purpose of seizure and confiscation of these vehicles where legally appropriate;
- A legal requirement to register/licence these vehicles – making it an offence to drive them unregistered and /or unlicensed.
- Making it an offence to use these vehicles in an irresponsible manner
however, this is clearly not the case.
Gardaí have experienced serious difficulties from an enforcement perspective when attempting to
apprehend persons engaging in this dangerous and anti-social behaviour. Interception poses
significant risks, not only to the drivers and passengers of these vehicles, but also to members of
the public and local Gardaí in affected communities
Under existing Road Traffic legislation, the Gardai undertook a successful operation on
Christmas Day in Cabra. “This was a resource-intensive Garda operation, which posed
considerable risk to the attending members. In total, 11 quad bikes and 2 cars were seized
under section 41 of the Road Traffic Act 1994 and 5 arrests were made for dangerous
driving in accordance with section 53 of the Road Traffic Act 1961,” – this is taken from a
response from the Minister for Justice to a Parliamentary Question on the matter this week.
Joint Policing Committee
I have raised this issue on your behalf and on behalf of other communities in my
constituency with Garda, locally.
As a member of South Dublin’s Joint Policing Committee, I am requesting the
Superintendent in Tallaght, to consider a similar operation, which is Garda-Intensive, as a
measure to be considered, pending the introduction of legislation which myself and John
Curran TD are preparing, to equip the Gardai with the additional powers they require.
Scourge of Scramblers
Across my constituency I have complaints from residents regarding the use of Scramblers
and Quads on public roads, public open spaces, on footpaths, in open parkland and close to
schools and playgrounds.