Skating or scooting could be very costly

DANIEL BIRCHFIELD
Last updated 05:00 10/06/2014

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If you skate or ride your scooter in Waimate's main shopping area, you might find yourself wheelless and with a fine.

The warning from Waimate police comes after several people recently came close to being hit by young people riding their skateboards and scooters past businesses on Queen St.

"We've had a few people come in off the street to complain about kids riding their skateboards and scooters quite quickly on Queen St, heading towards the skate park," Waimate police Sergeant Mike van der Heyden said.

"We've spoken to the council about it and have warned kids not to ride them on the footpath."

People run the risk of a fine and having their scooter or skateboard confiscated under a Waimate District Council by-law, introduced in 2008, if they ride in the area.

The penalty for riding a skateboard or scooter around Queen St businesses is a $25 fine, as well as having the skateboard or scooter confiscated for three days.

Van der Heyden said the bylaw was in a "set area" that covered Waimate's main business district.

Most of the incidents took place after school or during school lunch hours, while there was also an increase in the number of people using skateboards or scooters during the school holidays.

"There's a lot more kids around then," van der Heyden said.

Police have had to issue a handful of fines under the bylaw and van der Heyden said the response from those involved had generally been positive.

"We want to make kids and their parents aware so the kids know the rules. They obviously don't want their skateboards or scooters taken away from them ... we're encouraging them to push or carry it through the business area."

Police were taking a "sensible attitude" to the issue, he said.

"If the shops are shut and there's no-one on the footpath, we aren't really enforcing it."

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- The Timaru Herald

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