National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) and NSW Police have taken to two wheels to maintain safety in our region's national parks and other reserves with inter-agency trail bike patrols.
The joint law enforcement operation tackles illegal activity and anti-social behaviour in the parks and reserves, while also helping to protect ecological communities which are home to many rare and threatened plant and animal species.
"While the vast majority of visitors to local parks are well behaved, some people unfortunately engage in illegal activity," NPWS Area Manager,Barrington Tops,Anthony Signor said.
"This is not only dangerous, but also disturbs park neighbours and the general public, and puts our local wildlife and park assets at risk," he explained.
The patrols provide the NPWS with an opportunity to work closely with the police to address issues such as the riding of unregistered motorbikes on public land and driving vehicles in closed areas without authorisation. These activities damage the environment and the fire trails, which is both expensive to fix and impacts the NPWS's ability to fight wildfires.
On recent patrols, police intercepted two unregistered motorcycle owners and three abandoned cars. Riding or driving unregistered motorbikes and other vehicles on public land attracts heavy penalties and accessing areas closed to vehicles may also see offenders issued with fines.
NPWS would like to remind visitors in the area to abide by NSW law and NPWS regulations, by observing and complying with all signage around the parks.
"We want to protect the unique environment of the Barrington Tops region, as well as make visitors and our local community feel safe while they enjoy our beautiful parks. There are also numerous public trails available across the region's reserves for four-wheel drives and for licenced riders on registered motorbikes to legitimately enjoy," Anthony said.
Members of the public can call the NPWS general enquiry line on 1300 361 967 to report illegal activity or phone 000 in emergencies. For further information about NSW National Parks policies, please visit https://www.environment.nsw.gov.au/topics/parks-reserves-and-protected-areas/parkpolicies