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The Moped Gang Craze in London and Implications for EUCs

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Currently in London there is a moped gang craze which has been causing an outcry in communities right across the capital.
They are (often underage) teenagers who don't wear helmets and seem to have little regard to their own or anyone else's safety. They ride superfast all over the road and also on the pavement. Some of the riders have been robbing people, targeting mobile phones and other bikes. The trend may be related to the widely publicised view that the police will not chase anyone on a motorbike who is not wearing a helmet. This is because several police apparently lost their jobs after a rider died during a pursuit. There is also an abundance of poorly protected mopeds being ridden around - in part due to the popularity of "Deliveroo" and "Uber"-like delivery services.

Certainly in my own neighbourhood (in South London) it's a big problem - we have the police helicopter overhead at least three or four times a week, and there is growing calls from the community that the police need to address the issue. Over half of all social media posts in the various local parent and community groups that I follow relate to this issue and there are repeated requests for people to photograph bikes and riders to build up intelligence to pass to the police!

What I'm worried about is that if there is a crackdown, then EUCs may end up being clamped down on as well. In some people's eyes there isn't any difference between riding a moped or an EUC along the pavement, especially if they are being ridden at speed or inconsiderately. I certainly can't see this helping the legal situation here in the UK which is a shame.

Recently I have had a number of interactions with groups of masked moped riders - so far they have been okay - they all seem intrigued with my tricks, although it does get a little bit intimidating when you are being circled by six masked moped riders all revving their hairdryers, especially when you have seen the same riders riding around clutching what look to be weapons! For now, I have decided to stick to my twice weekly lunchtime sessions in town and the occasional early morning weekend ride, or riding in one of the larger parks.

It would be interesting to hear any other stories or views of riders from London.

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Gee, they use surveillance helicopters? Drones are the cheaper solution these days.

If anybody hassles you, maybe it's best to discreetly take their photo and hand it to the cops, to let them deal with it. There's also safety in numbers, so maybe try to be with friends (big friends) when you're in the riskier areas. If you were in the US, I'd point out your right to bear arms, but being that you're in the UK, perhaps some mace/pepper-spray would be handy in a life-threatening situation? You really don't want to get into a physical altercation with anybody, because even if you clobber them, they'll just come after you later on. That's how it always works, unless they get sent to jail, or something.



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Sounds like a real problem, I agree.  I doubt legislators or city councilmen or whatever will feel much need to be scrupulous in banning only one type of electric vehicle rather than another.  It's always easier to give a blanket "no" than to drill down into complexities.


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