Don't get on your bike

A man has been fined for carrying his child while riding his bike through Burton, Staffordhire. Ghulam Murtrza, 26, has been issued a fixed penalty notice under section 24 of the 1988 Road Traffic Act, which stipulates that it is illegal to carry a passenger on a bike unless the bike has been specially adapted for the purpose.

Furious, Mr Murtrza ripped up the notice and got fined for littering in the process! 'I have been riding like this for 13 months and the police have never told me it was not safe,' Murtza said.

'It took this one officer, who had nothing better to do, who decided to arrest me.'

Ch Insp Phil Fortun of the East Staffordshire Local Policing Team (LPT), defended the prosecution.

'It is our duty to protect people and ensure the safety of the communities we serve,' he said.

'The bicycle was not made to carry a child in that way and officers took action to protect the young child from potential injury or worse, should the bike have been involved in a collision.

'The bike's owner was well-meaning in his efforts, but misguided with regards to the safety of himself and his son.'

Taxi driver Murta pleaded guilty to both offences at Burton magistrates. He was fined £100 for the cycling offence, and had to pay court costs as well as a £15 victim surcharge.

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