Petrol stations owners in the North East are working with Humberside Police in an initiative aiming to take illicit motorbikes off the road.

The police force has been carrying out Operation Yellowfin to tackle motorbike crime, and as part of that it is encouraging petrol station workers to look out for anyone who is riding a motorbike illegally and stop them from filling up.

Posters will be displayed in petrol station forecourts alongside Crimestoppers ones to issue a warning to potential criminals to prevent them from trying to fuel up and ride off.

Crime reduction officer PC Andy Allen said: “One part of our initiative to reduce motorbike crime is to tackle it at the source.

“If an individual has stolen a bike, is riding illegally, or intends to commit a crime on a motorcycle or scooter then it’s difficult to ride away without any petrol in the tank.

“We are working alongside petrol station owners and encouraging them to look out for anyone who they think is suspicious, restrict or stop the sale of petrol to them, and report it to us.

“As with any offence of this nature working together to will help us detect and prevent crime and make our communities safer and stronger.”

The week of police activity will end with around 400 bikers taking part in a rally on Sunday April 15. The 17-mile route will take in hotspots for bike crime.

Motorbike enthusiast Karl Freebury, who has organised the rally, said: “This ride is to show the criminals that as bikers we stand together.

“We shall be riding a complete circuit of known criminal hotspots and are continuing on from the great work that Humberside Police have been doing with the help of the two and three wheel community.”