PCC wants all motorcycles fitted with trackers and speed monitors

Northumbria PCC wants all motorcycles to be fitted with trackers to monitor both their speed and location at all times - is this fair?

South Yorkshire Police off-road motorcycle team

POLICE and Crime Commissioner for Northumbria, Kim McGuinness, is looking to urgently prod the Government into introducing new bike laws - namely, fitting tracking devices to all motorcycles to monitor their location at speed at all times. 

Taken from the Northumbria Police & Crime Commissioner site: ‘Kim is urging Policing Minister Kit Malthouse to give the green light to allow for tracker devices to be fitted to all motorbikes so their whereabouts and speed can be monitored – a move to deter would-be criminals.’

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We’re not quite sure how monitoring the speed of all motorcyclists will deter criminals, but the thought is there, albeit smelling strongly of tarring all motorcyclists with the same brush.

Craig Carey-Clinch of the recently formed National Motorcycle Council comments: 

“Most motorcyclists are law-abiding citizens and won’t appreciate feeling they are all being put on something akin to a criminal ‘tagging’ sanction. This is, sadly, a poorly thought-through idea which would guarantee negative impacts for legitimate riders, not least on their personal privacy, but is unlikely to impact on law breakers - whose first action would be likely to simply disable or remove the trackers." 

Whilst PCC McGuinness continues

“I don’t mean our law-abiding bikers here – I’m talking about trouble-makers, often young people riding un-roadworthy bikes, which in some cases have been stolen.  It’s their own safety that is at risk here too – worryingly there’s a real lack of awareness of the consequences. A tough approach needs to be taken and I fully back our force with this, especially when engagement and education isn’t getting through to those responsible.

“But what I really want is to go a step further and I believe trackers would be a real deterrent. There is a growing sense of momentum in our region to put a stop to this problem. I want to build on this and think Government support to make trackers a real possibility would be a good place to start.”

Trackers, to be fair, would have helped finding the guys who rode out of a dealership front door, stealing four Harley-Davidsons...

Commenting on the situation, BMF Chairman Jim Freeman said

"This proposal is as sinister as it is unfair, and the British Motorcyclists Federation objects strongly to it and the assumptions behind it. The mandatory use of a tracker is usually a sentence imposed by the courts after due process has been followed, but this would be tantamount to a collective punishment that sweeps hundreds of thousands of innocents up along with the tiny minority of the guilty without an investigation, trial or verdict. 

The vast majority of motorcyclists are responsible and law-abiding citizens from all walks of life who have done nothing to justify being treated like criminals and there are far better solutions to the genuine problem of anti-social behaviour than this. Also, the draconian precedent it sets would be horrifyingly Orwellian - should we start adding tracking devices to cars, bicycles and even shoes too, since a criminal might just as easily use them to travel to commit a crime?" 

There will be no wheelies... Your motorcycle could call the Police and let them know you're being naughty!

It’s a developing story and situation, but we’re glad that there is a voice defending the majority of motorcyclists who will oppose being tracked and monitored at all times. A tracker is no doubt a top way of locating a motorcycle if stolen, and many dealerships will fit a tracker happily with the sale of a motorcycle - but that’s to the option of the buyer. 

What are your opinions on being forced to fit a tracker to your motorcycle? Let us know on social media, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram.