Lewisham 'skitching' trio lose free travel after rollerskating and hitching ride on back of bus
ROLLERSKATING and hitching a ride on the back of buses in Lewisham has cost three young people their free travel for being “dangerous” and “foolish”.
So-called ‘skitching’ – or skate-hitching – is becoming an increasingly common sight along Lewisham’s streets but can land thrill-seekers with penalties including a criminal record for adults.
Three youths were spotted by police skating up to stationary buses and clinging to the rear to ride down Rushey Green towards Catford.
They had their Zip Oyster Cards– which grants 11 to 15-year-olds free travel on buses and trams in London - taken away by Transport For London.
A 16-year-old boy has also been arrested for ‘skitching’ on the back of a bus along Lewisham High Street on August 22.
He has been charged with holding onto a moving vehicle in order to be towed away under the Road Traffic Act 1988 and will appear at Bromley Magistrates’ Court on September 6.
Chief Superintendent Sultan Taylor, of the Met Police’s safer transport command, said: “This is not a harmless act of fun. It is a dangerous, foolish act that can result in life-changing and life-threatening injuries which would cause much distress to family, friends, and the public in the event of an incident.
“I would urge people to think about their actions and refrain from this behaviour. If you do commit reckless acts on the transport network we will identify you and arrest you and you will lose your free travel privileges which will cost yourself or your family a considerable amount of money each year.”
Free-travel Zip Oyster Cards can be withdrawn if people breach the behaviour code which card users sign up to. Adults can receive a criminal record or £300 fine for the offence.