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North West 200 - safety advice to motorists

The annual ‘North West 200’ motorcycle road race will take place in Coleraine, Northern Ireland tomorrow (Saturday, May 21) and police are appealing for drivers in the region to take extra care on the roads as around 3500 motorcycles are expected to travel across the region to attend the event.

These bikes are expected to use the regions roads, particularly the A75 and A77 trunk roads, as the riders travel to ferry ports at Stranraer and Cairnryan to attend the event and back using the same route when the race is over.

Police are warning motorists to expect high numbers of motorcyclists on these roads from Wednesday 18 May right through to Monday 23 May as riders may their way to and from the event.

On occasions the motorcycles will travel in large groups which should not overly concern motorists. However it is important that members of the public keep an eye out for motorcyclists as they can suddenly appear and are sometimes difficult to see.

Sergeant Billy McEwan from Roads Policing Unit said: “A common cause of motorcycle crashes is the so-called T-boning of the motorcycle by drivers who either pull out of a junction in front of, or across the path of an oncoming bike to turn right. These collisions could be avoided by drivers taking more care.

“Drivers should remember that motorcyclists are much more vulnerable than drivers, especially in wet conditions. A driver may walk away from a crash that a motorcyclist would not.

“We will have an increased road presence during this time and will focus on accident hotspots and promoting responsible driver and rider behaviour.”

Appeals for witnesses

Police in Dumfries and Galloway are appealing for witnesses to the following incidents:

Fire raising – Stranraer

A cottage near Stoneykirk was discovered alight at around 11.20hrs on Friday 13 May. No one was harmed in the fire.

Payphone tampered with – Stranraer

A payphone on Port Rodie was tampered with at around 11.30hrs on Friday 13 May. Police are keen to speak to anyone who seen a maroon coloured Fiat Brava motor car seen in the area around this time.

Car damaged – Stranraer

A Peugeot 206 sustained a dent as it was parked on London road sometime between 09.30hrs and 16.00hrs on Friday 13 May.

Man reported – Kirkcudbright

A local 45 year old man will be reported to the Procurator Fiscal in relation to an assault that took place on St Cuthbert Street on Saturday 14 May.

Anyone with any information on these incidents is asked to contact police on 0845 600 5701 or any police officer. Information can also be left anonymously with Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111. Crime prevention advice can be found on police website www.dg.police.uk