Cyclists on one of Adelaide’s most popular riding routes have been targeted with booby traps including tacks and oil slicks.
Norton Summit Road has seen least two cyclists in reported crashes, and dozens have been forced to fix punctures on the climb, with thumb tacks deliberately left on the road.
“This behaviour is irresponsible and idiotic. This prank could go horribly wrong,” Inspector Gus Sickerdick, Officer in Charge of Hills Fleurieu Local Service Area, told Adelaide Now.
“It is well-known that cyclists and motorbike riders regularly use this road. The reality is this disturbing behaviour could easily lead to riders being seriously injured or even killed.”
“In recent weeks there have been a spate of tack attacks on cyclists riding the new Norton Summit Road,’’ a resident said.
“Today I have been told by cyclists the following: Someone has deliberately poured oil in two places along Norton Summit, as well as lots of tacks. Cyclists have come off riding there this morning.
“Apparently the tacks have been there for a few weeks and keep getting topped up, but the oil is a new thing.”
Another cyclist called for riders to stay safe.
“This is awful. All it would take is someone coming down fast and a few pins in the front tyre and they could go over the handlebars before they get a chance to stop.’’
Anyone with information is asked to contact the police assistance line on 131 444 or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or click here.
Back in the UK, we reported last year how competitors in the Redhill Cycle Club road race sustained punctures after riding over drawing pins scattered on the road near Newdigate.
Fortunately nobody was injured, but organiser Adrian Webb told Get Surrey that the culprits were “lucky nobody was killed”.
“This was very serious and hugely dangerous,” he said. “I don’t think the people who did this, probably thinking they were having a laugh, actually thought through the harm that they could have caused.
“If you have someone go over those pins at 20 or 25mph in a peloton of 60 cyclists and they come off the bike, the injuries could be serious or even fatal.
“I couldn’t believe it when it happened. There were riders just walking their bikes with pins through the wheels.”
Surrey’s popularity as a cycling destination has inspired vociferous opposition from what appears to be a handful of residents in recent years.
After an unpromising start, having to be bribed by her parents to learn to ride without stabilisers, Sarah became rather keener on cycling in her university years, and was eventually persuaded to upgrade to proper road cycling by the prospect of a shiny red Italian bike, which she promptly destroyed by trapping a pair of knickers in the rear derailleur. Sarah writes about about cycling every weekend on road.cc.