‘Stop those cars making residents lives hell every weekend’ - ‘these are young fella’s in their cars showing off, spinning their wheels and burning rubber’

Calls have been made for the PSNI to “sort out” gatherings of youths and others in cars in a Co Antrim town at weekends.

By Gemma Murray
Thursday, 3rd March 2022, 3:33 pm

The call has been made by UUP Councillor William McNeilly from Mid and East Antrim Borough Council, who said: “The PSNI need to do something about it.

“Sort it out and make life easier for residents”, he adds.

The UUP veteran added: “I know there are motorists gathering up and driving around the square (in the town) and local people are fed up with them.

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“It is causing real upset for residents in the town.

“They have phoned the police and when the police come, the cars clear off - and I know a lot of residents down there are not happy with it.

“These are young fellas in their cars showing off, spinning their wheels and burning rubber.

“It is causing real annoyance when it happens more or less at the weekends.”

In recent days a post on Police Mid and East Antrim Facebook page said: “At 10pm on Sunday night we received a report of approximately 100 motorists engaged in anti-social behaviour in Portglenone.

“Local officers attended and using powers under the Road Traffic Order conducted a number of breath tests and inspected vehicles for defects.

“One male was arrested for disorderly behaviour and resisting police. A report is being prepared for the PPS to consider.

“The PSNI need to do something about it - sort it out and make life easier for residents.”

When asked to comment on the latest claim, Neighbourhood Policing Team Inspector, Beverlie Reid said: “Police fully appreciate there is a culture, particularly in Northern Ireland, for drivers who take a keen interest in modifying, tuning and detailing their cars.

“For many this is an enjoyable hobby that takes quite a bit of time, money and effort.

“However, all cars involved must be roadworthy and capable of being used on the roads safely and all those taking part in ‘car cruise’ events must show consideration for residents and other motorists and be aware of their driving standards and the potential inconvenience that these gatherings may bring. Remember there may be people living nearby who do not want to listen to the constant noise of cars revving their engines.

“Ideally, I would ask organisers of such events to contact police beforehand to discuss how it is being organised and so that a clear understanding of what is expected from everyone concerned can be agreed. On the night of Sunday 27th February, we received a number of complaints from residents in Portglenone about a large gathering of motorists in the area and of various instances of irresponsible driving. Officers attended and spoke to a large number of those present and remained in the area until all cars involved in the event had left. One man was arrested on suspicion of disorderly behaviour and resisting arrest and will be reported to the Public Prosecution Service. When we are made aware of anti-social behaviour, dangerous driving or any other activity associated with car cruise events that poses an issue for people in the area where the event is being held, we will attend and deal with the matter in a robust manner.

“I would encourage anyone suffering as a result of anti-social behaviour, or who is experiencing any inconvenience as a result of these events to call their local police immediately to ensure a prompt and effective response.”

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