Enjoying the peace of a summer evening is a pleasure that we all look forward to.

Yet in many parts of the country, that enjoyment is shattered by the noise of quad bikes or motorcycles, often illegally ridden, through residential areas or shopping precincts.

These vehicles not only cause noise nuisance throughout the year, but are often driven anti-socially and sometimes even dangerously, posing a threat to other road users and predestrians.

Bradford is no exception, but over the past four years great efforts have been made to address this issue.

Almost four years ago a special unit - Bradford Anti-Social Bike Team - was set up. Nicknamed the ‘Quad Squad’, it has been successful in seizing more than 1000 nuisance vehicles, some of which have subsequently been crushed to prevent further use.

“Our small team has been working hard to address concerns with nuisance vehicles across the district since July 2014, and to date have seized 1,081 vehicles which were either found to have been used in crime, stolen or reported as being used in an anti-social way,” says PC Dave Hitchcocks, who has been has been with the team since its launch in July 2014.

“We have also issued more than 967 Section 59 warnings for anti-social vehicle use, submitted more than 500 prosecution files for road traffic offences and attended more than 2,500 incidents.”

One, in Horton Park in summer last year, in which a quad bike rider tried to make off on his quad bike, resulted in an officer being trapped under the vehicle.

“He struck one of the officers causing him to be temporarily pinned under the bike,” recalls PC Hitchcocks. “The rider was traced by the officers and later convicted of dangerous driving at Bradford Crown Court. He was sentenced to 20 weeks in a young offenders’ institute and banned for 14 months.”

Another successful result came after an officer from the team responded to a call about suspicious circumstances involving a motorbike in Ravenscliffe. A van was found to contain a motorcycle stolen in a burglary a few days earlier.

“Enquiries resulted in two males being brought before the courts. One was given a custodial sentence and the other received a community order,” says PC Hitchcocks.

Last month the bike team tweeted a picture of a bike reportedly used in the Thorpe Edge area by three young men. It had been found and one of the group was taken into custody. Another bike was quickly located following an incident in Saltaire.

Summer is generally the busiest time of the year for the squad, whose operations are often on police motorbikes, although they also work in unmarked vehicles and on foot.

The process of taking action against anti-social riders usually starts with a Section 59 warning which officers can issue to a motorist and vehicle if it is reported to have been used anti-socially. This lasts for a year and gives officers the power to seize the vehicle if another report is received.

“Anyone who has their vehicle seized must pay for its recovery,” explains PC Hitchcocks. “Those which are not claimed usually end up being crushed to prevent that vehicle from being used in further offending.

“Prosecution is not just limited to the offenders themselves. By working in partnership with housing associations, we can also pursue action against addresses which are being used to store the vehicles. “

Crucial to the team’s success is help from members of the public, who can report incidents or suspicious behaviour.

Says PC Hitchcocks: “It is information from members of the public that has been crucial in helping us to deliver these results. We would like to take this opportunity to thank people for their assistance.

“We will continue to act on calls and emails to help make summer as peaceful as possible.”

He urges people to contact the team as soon as possible, and provide as many details as they are able.

“Dates, times, locations, descriptions of vehicles and any names and addresses that may assist our enquiries. These can be given in confidence and we will only visit people if they would like us to.”

“As well as responding to calls from members of the public we work with partner agencies and colleagues at West Yorkshire Police to reduce the anti-social and illegal use of vehicles in targeted operations across Bradford district,” he adds.

Other forces have also shown an interest in how the team approach nuisance vehicles and the methods used to combat the problem.

*Nuisance vehicles can be reported to bdasbbiketeam@westyorkshire.pnn.police.uk or by calling the non-emergency 101 number. There is also an answer machine facility on 01274 373968.