Tack-dropping since Feb 2014 in inner Melbourne, no end in sight

Discussion in 'Advocacy and Cycling Safety' started by Shut Up Legs, 11 May 2014.

  1. Shut Up Legs

    Shut Up Legs Down Under Member

    It's just reached the mainstream media (after almost 3 months :rolleyes:):
    Melbourne's Herald Sun (aka Feral Hun, due to its anti-cyclist stance and generally tabloid style aimed at bogans) article.

    This is the discussion thread that's been running since the tacks first appeared:
    https://www.bicyclenetwork.com.au/forums/viewtopic.php?f=5&t=26910

    In late February, one of the Australian cycling forums reported that a large number of tacks had been strewn along the parking lane (which generally also serves as a cycling lane, although it's not mandatory for cyclists to use) in Yarra Boulevard, a scenic road winding its way through Yarra Bend Park in the suburb of Kew, inner Melbourne. I then decided to stop using this road as part of my commute, even though I did enjoy riding along it, because I didn't want to be replacing tubes at least once per week. I've found an alternative route which is pleasant enough and avoids the worst of the main roads.

    Three months later, the tacks are still being thrown onto this road, along with triangular shards of metal or glass! :angry: Whoever's doing it has a serious grudge against cyclists. There are the occasional groups of cyclists who ride along this road in the early morning on weekends who apparently can get a bit noisy when chatting amongst themselves, but it certainly doesn't justify putting tacks on the road.

    This has already caused at least one cyclist to crash, after his front tube suddenly deflated and he lost control. Apparently, a few motorcyclists have had flats caused by the tacks, and there was a report on the cycling fora of a motorist with a flat tyre also.

    Do you get anything like this in the UK?
     
  2. Ganymede

    Ganymede Veteran

    Location:
    Rural Kent
    The police should look for DNA on those tacks. I'm serious here, not going all CSI! Burglars were caught after taking the doors off our shed because they dropped the screws they took out of the hinges and the nice lady from forensics picked them up and tested them.

    Of course the toerags that did our shed were already on the police database and by the time the tests came back they'd already been nicked for something else. Your tack-meisters are probably "respectable" residents, but you might get lucky.

    You'll need to wear gloves to collect the tacks, of course. These people are criminals and I'm sorry to hear of your trouble.
     
    Pat "5mph" and classic33 like this.
  3. TheDoctor

    TheDoctor Man-Machine Moderator

    Location:
    Stevenage
    We sure do. There was a sportive in Scotland IIRC, and a few in the New Forest, where the road was strewn with sharp stuff and chaos ensued.
    General commuting roads - not so much.
    There's a cycle track near me that often has broken glass on it, but it's outside a pub and it's broken beer bottles.
    I doubt it's maliciously anti-cyclist, but it's a pain in the arse nonetheless...
     
    raleighnut and classic33 like this.
  4. classic33

    classic33 Legendary Member

    A few years ago someone was cutting up carpet gripper strips, nails on both sides, nailing them together and making certain they landed in the cycle lane on the A58. A section of road(dual carriage way that narrowed to a single lane at the top of the hill, used by all kinds of traffic, but also prone to long delays and tailbacks. Three mile tailbacks not uncommon at times. But the cycle lane had very few users.
    Clear that they had been made, sawn and then nailed together, so if you hit one you got a nail through the tyre.
     
    172traindriver likes this.
  5. jarlrmai

    jarlrmai Veteran

    A few hidden trail cameras would expose the culprit.
     
    Saluki and _aD like this.
  6. classic33

    classic33 Legendary Member

    They were seen being thrown out of the passenger side of a car in a line of traffic. Which one they were unable to say.
     
    172traindriver likes this.
  7. OP
    OP
    Shut Up Legs

    Shut Up Legs Down Under Member

    Then you had better luck than us. Apart from speculation that the tacks were being thrown from a car passenger window, due to the distribution of the tacks on the road, nobody knows anything for certain, and the culprit remains unknown :angry:. What's worse is that the recent media coverage may even inspire some copycats in other areas.
     
  8. classic33

    classic33 Legendary Member

    Strecth of road it happened on is covered by a camera, real time. It just needs to be pointing in the right direction. That was done after reporting the matter & by taking one of the pieces made to the police.
    It was caught on camera, in rush hour traffic (nose to tail & not moving fast) but they were unable to say what vehicle it came from. Went on for over a week after it was reported and then caught on camera. About two weeks in total.
     
    172traindriver likes this.
  9. Ganymede

    Ganymede Veteran

    Location:
    Rural Kent
    Did you get a conviction, classic33?
     
    Mad Doug Biker likes this.
  10. classic33

    classic33 Legendary Member

    No. The best they were able to say was it was being done. But not who was doing it.
    Always the morning rush hour.
     
    172traindriver and Ganymede like this.
  11. I must have been lucky, cycled round there a few times in march and april.

    @victor are there many houses in earshot of The Boulevard? It's quite bucolic.

    (nb: bogan is Australian for chav. And this incident would be the equivalent of putting tacks on Box Hill, or around Richmond Park)
     
    Ganymede likes this.
  12. OP
    OP
    Shut Up Legs

    Shut Up Legs Down Under Member

    Yes, there are lots of houses next to Yarra Boulevard, I hate to think of how much they cost to buy. Yes, you probably did get lucky, because the tacks have been laid consistently just about every week for 3 months now (or 3 months minus 1 week). Somebody's got a really bad grudge against cyclists.
     
  13. Ganymede

    Ganymede Veteran

    Location:
    Rural Kent
    Yes... someone who was on holiday that week... or confined to bed...

    *turns up collar of Colombo mac*
     
    Hill Wimp, classic33 and Dogtrousers like this.
  14. OP
    OP
    Shut Up Legs

    Shut Up Legs Down Under Member

    :laugh: Actually, what I meant is that for 1 week short of 3 months, i.e. 12 weeks, this idiot has been laying tacks at least once a week. To give the police their due, they are trying to find this person, but it's not an easy task, I'm guessing.
     
    Ganymede likes this.
  15. Globalti

    Globalti Legendary Member

    I punctured with a tack on the Cape Argus race in Cape Town. A good number of the other 32,000 riders did in the same place as well, judging by the gang of local lads patrolling the stretch of road just after where I picked up the tack, each with a bandolero of about a dozen inner tubes around his shoulder! Presumably they use them for catapaults.
     
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