Two cases of dangerous tampering with motorcycles have been reported in Emden (Germany), where unknown perpetrators attached padlocks to the brake discs.  Police are investigating and warning motorcyclists to check their vehicles thoroughly to detect possible acts of sabotage in time to avoid accidents.

Two incidents of dangerous interference with road traffic in Emden.

In the past week, two incidents involving dangerous tampering with motorcycles were registered in Emden.  On April 20, 2023, a 17-year-old schoolgirl found that an unknown perpetrator had attached a padlock to a ventilation slot on her brake disc.  Meanwhile, her KTM motorcycle was parked on the grounds of a high school in Steinweg.


The danger posed by a padlock on the brake disc

The padlock on the brake disc causes the bike to rotate normally at first, but suddenly locks up when the lock catches on the brake caliper.  This can lead to a fall, as the lock is abrupt and catches riders off guard.  Even if a fall does not occur, the brake disc or caliper can be damaged as a result.  When the young woman tried to move her motorcycle, she fell.  Fortunately, she did not suffer any injuries, but her motorcycle was damaged.


Second case at the weekend in Boltentorstraße

A similar incident occurred between last Saturday and Sunday in Boltentorstraße at the corner of Rademacherstraße.  Here, a Harley-Davidson was tampered with by unknown persons by also attaching a padlock to a ventilation slot of the brake disc.  When the 50-year-old owner wanted to drive off on Sunday morning, the motorcycle tipped over.  In this case, too, the rider was uninjured and the motorcycle suffered no damage.


Police investigate and warn motorcyclists

The police in Emden have taken up the investigation in both cases and are checking whether there is a connection between the two acts.  The Leer/Emden Police Inspectorate is calling on all motorcyclists to take extra care and check their vehicles thoroughly before starting a ride, in order to detect possible acts of sabotage in good time and avoid damage or accidents.


What to do if you find a lock on the brake disc

If one finds a lock on the brake disc of the motorcycle, it would be advisable to first contact the police and inform them about the incident.  It is advisable to take photos of the situation to secure evidence for possible criminal charges.  If you want to remove the lock, you could try to cut it with a bolt cutter or an angle grinder.  If this is not possible, it would be an option to call the roadside assistance service, which can help you remove the lock.  However, it should be noted that removing the lock without police consent could potentially destroy evidence that could be important to the investigation.

After the lock has been removed, it would be advisable to thoroughly inspect the motorcycle for further tampering or damage to ensure that there are no further dangers.  Special attention should be paid to the condition of the brakes, tires and other safety-related parts.  It would be important to inform the police of any other abnormalities found during the inspection of the motorcycle.

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Dangerous sabotage: padlocks on motorcycle brake discs in Emden 3

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