Speed­ing bik­ers branded reck­less

Dumfries & Galloway Standard - - INTIMATIONS -

Stu­art Gille­spie

A po­lice car had to travel at nearly 130mph to catch up with a group of bik­ers speed­ing through the Ste­wartry.

Cops yes­ter­day hit out at the “reck­less dis­re­gard” the five showed to­wards both their own safety and that of oth­ers on the A713 Cas­tle Dou­glas to Ayr road.

All were hit with fines of up to £800 at Dum­fries Sher­iff Court this week and one was also banned from the road for 75 days.

But road safety char­ity Brake de­scribed the pun­ish­ments as “le­nient”.

Di­rec­tor of cam­paigns, Jason Wake­ford, said: “Speed­ing is to­tally wrong – it’s also self­ish and mas­sively in­creases the chance of be­ing in­volved in a deadly crash. A fifth of road deaths in 2015 in­volved a mo­tor­cy­clist, an in­crease of eight per cent from the pre­vi­ous year.

“Le­nient sen­tences like these un­der­line the ur­gent need for much tougher penal­ties for those guilty of putting in­no­cent lives at risk.”

The bik­ers, An­drew Gaston, 53, of Lochans Mill Av­enue, Lochans; Si­mon Beswick, 49, of Rose­field Av­enue, and Gavin Thom­son, 34, of Beech­wood Av­enue, both Stran­raer; An­drew Beswick, 44,of Tree­bank, Dun­ragit; and Carol Ann Brown, 31, of Lochaber Cot­tage, Lochan­head, Dum­fries; were orig­i­nally charged with dan­ger­ous driv­ing.

But all five had pleas to the lesser charge of care­less driv­ing ac­cepted.

Sergeant Paul Dodds said: “These speeds show a reck­less dis­re­gard for the safety of other road users on this road and in­deed for the riders’ own safety.

“The con­se­quences don’t bear think­ing about when you take into con­sid­er­a­tion that this is a ru­ral road in our re­gion which of­ten has slow mov­ing farm traf­fic, an­i­mals and other po­ten­tial haz­ards for mo­torists on it.”

The court was shown a video from a po­lice car which reached 128mph while chas­ing the five. The car had been parked in a layby near New Gal­loway be­fore over­tak­ing the riders one by one and halt­ing them at Par­ton.

De­pute fis­cal Lyn­d­say Hunter told the court that the mo­tor­bikes were trav­el­ling at ex­ces­sive speeds for the lay­out of the coun­try road.

A solic­i­tor for the five said: “There was noth­ing wrong with their rid­ing – they were just go­ing too fast and they all knew that.”

Gaston, Si­mon and An­drew Beswick, were each fined £800 and had five points en­dorsed on their li­cences. Brown had five points put on her li­cence and was fined £700 and Thom­son was fined £700 and banned from driv­ing for 75 days.

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