Let’s make NW200 safe and enjoyable: police chief

Chief Inspector Nicky Thompson, of Coleraine PSNI.PICTURE MARK JAMIESON.
Chief Inspector Nicky Thompson, of Coleraine PSNI.PICTURE MARK JAMIESON.
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With crowds in excess of 100,000 expected to descend on Portrush for the 2013 International North West 200 festival, police are urging the public to play their part in a safe and enjoyable week for everyone.

Police, who will be in the area to promote safety throughout the week long festival, are warning that a robust approach will be taken against anyone who disrupts the weekend for others.

Coleraine Area Commander, Chief Inspector Nicky Thompson said: “Months of planning, and hundreds of hours work have been spent in preparation for the races. Spectators owe it to the race organisers to travel to and from the circuit safely; and to ensure that there is no disorder at the trackside or in the towns of Portrush and Portstewart during race week.

“In recent years the North West 200 has generated a truly family friendly atmosphere, and we don’t want to see any change in 2013. When you arrive at the circuit, make full use of the official car parks and don’t park in a prohibited area, or where your vehicle could cause an obstruction to ambulance routes or to public or private entrances. And, for your safety and the safety of the competitors, always obey the instructions of race marshals, once circuit roads have closed.

“Responsibility for a week free from anti-social behaviour and public disorder falls on everyone, and is safety is central to the event’s continued success.

“We will police with the community and try to be unobstrusive, but we will react quickly and appropriately to any situation, if we need to.”

Ch Insp Thompson asked race goers to be respectul of residents’ properties

“It is good manners to recognise that the gardens of local residents are not a place to dump your rubbish.

“Areas where on-street drinking is prohibited are clearly signposted. This year I would like to see people exercise more self-restraint, and take it upon themselves to observe the on-street drinking restrictions that are in force.

“ I hope that everyone has a great week and that this year’s event is enjoyable, safe, and free from crime and traffic collisions.”