Atlantic City, Paterson unveil laws to crack down on dangerous ATV, dirt bike riders

The cities of Atlantic City and Paterson have unveiled tougher laws to allow officials to crack down on illegal vehicles – vehicles Paterson Mayor Andre Sayegh calls “tools of terror.”

News 12 Staff

Sep 28, 2022, 10:54 PM

Updated 634 days ago

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The cities of Atlantic City and Paterson have unveiled tougher laws to allow officials to crack down on illegal vehicles – vehicles Paterson Mayor Andre Sayegh calls “tools of terror.”
The mayors of these cities say their residents are under siege by packs of illegal ATVs and dirt bike riders.
“All hours of the day and night and putting our pedestrians at risk of imminent bodily harm,” says Aymen Aboushi, of the Paterson Corporation Counsel. “The use of these bikes on our streets is illegal. You cannot ride these bikes; you cannot ride these ATVs.”
Mayor Sayegh signed a new local law on Wednesday to target illegal riding. He says it will “hit you where it hurts. So that’s the messages to the malefactors.”
Paterson police are already seizing illegal vehicles through Operation Confiscation. Now they can sell those bikes or even destroy them.
If you ride these illegal dirt bikes or ATVs on our streets, we will take them and we will keep them,” says Aboushi. “Just don't do it.”
More than 120 miles away, officials in Atlantic City officials are also taking a path to try and dissuade unsafe ATV use. They're not allowing any ATV or dirt bikes to fill up at any of that city's five gas stations - unless it's secured on a properly registered trailer or on a truck.
It’s a law that Paterson could potentially adopt.
“That's something we should take into consideration, we'll go to the Corporation Counsel, and I will go to the counsel, and see if there's an appetite for that, and I'm sure there will be,” Sayegh says.
Paterson Public Safety Director Jerry Speziale says police officers have multiple options of probable cause to pull over an ATV or dirt bike rider.
“Uninsured vehicle, unregistered vehicle, no safety equipment, not safe for on road use,” he says.
“Riding these bikes is illegal. That is the probable cause,” Aboushi says.
Atlantic City’s gas station ban does have an exception if the station attendant feels in physical jeopardy from an ATV rider. The attendant must call the police after the customer leaves.


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