The beautiful days augur the return of urban rodeos on motorcycles on the roads of Toulouse. In an attempt to curb the phenomenon, the national and municipal police are stepping up repression.
Front wheel in the air, engines roaring… Summer marks the return of urban rodeos. To hunt those who ride their motorcycles dangerously, spurred on by adrenaline, you can count on the sheriffs. In recent weeks, the police have applied zero tolerance (see box) on urban rodeos.
Bikers who respond to the call of fine weather face seizures of their motors, often unregistered, and increasingly numerous fines.
On May 27, in the city of Bellefontaine, the police impounded five two-wheelers that had been abandoned by their owners, who scampered off when they saw the agents heading towards them. The next day, in the Empalot district, a 21-year-old young man without a helmet made his machine backfire while multiplying acrobatics. A bikelife outing (name for urban rodeo enthusiasts, editor’s note) which ended in police custody. A few days later, on June 10, bis repetita.
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At the beginning of the evening, the police officers of the BST du Mirail arrested three young people who were driving a scooter and a small motorcycle. The epilogue of illegal two-wheeled trips has taken a turn for the worse in recent days. The police are hard at work. “The fight against rodeos has always been at the heart of police action in terms of road safety. Beyond being a source of accidents, this phenomenon has generated noise pollution and a strong feeling of insecurity. This phenomenon intensifies with the help of fine weather and is the subject of particular attention from the services, ”indicates the national police.
“The police are everywhere”
The phenomenon, born in the cities, has spread. According to the police, motorized practice can be seen everywhere, “on public roads but also in green spaces”. Emilion Esnault, deputy mayor in charge of security, confirms:
“We observe urban rodeos in working-class neighborhoods as well as in less urbanized areas. This is the case in Montaudran, near the Oncopole or even north of Toulouse. “With the development of telephony and social networks, the new drivers of two-wheelers devote themselves to the practice, according to the national police.
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Yo, by his last name, is a fan of bikelife. The 27-year-old lives in the Toulouse suburbs. If he happened to go to Toulouse to lift his bike, it’s a bygone era. “The police are everywhere, all the time,” slips Yo. He continues: “Motorcycling in Toulouse is complicated, whether we go to industrial areas or on the road, the risk of having our two-wheelers confiscated is too great. We feel that the police want to put an end to our practice, which is considered too dangerous. »
To rear his motorcycle on one wheel and perform acrobatics, the motorcyclist stays in his countryside, sheltered from flashing lights and the problems they announce. “But the police chase us even in remote corners”, confides he.