Bikers, ATV riders take over major South Florida roads

MIAMI – Dozens of dirt bike and all-terrain vehicle riders swamped major South Florida roads for the second Martin Luther King Jr. holiday in a row.

Helicopter video Monday showed large groups of riders on highways such as Interstate 95 popping wheelies and doing other stunts amid fairly light holiday traffic.

Police in Miami-Dade and Broward counties say they were better prepared for the group than last year, when riders caused major traffic jams. Authorities said this week that they would keep their distance as long as the riders don’t commit serious crimes or ride too dangerously.

Officers made at least two arrests and towed multiple motorcycles and ATVs throughout the day.

Juan Perez, Deputy Director of MDPD, tweeted: “It is unfortunate that while Miami-Dade celebrates the life of a great leader, we are forced to arrest and seize off road bikes.” He continued: “This recklessness cannot be tolerated. These stunts place too many residents in harm’s way.”

Organizers of the event have said it is part of an anti-violence campaign called “bikes up, guns down.” The goal, according to Instagram posts, is to make a statement about police brutality and to honor the legacy of the slain civil rights leader.

The Associated Press and NBC News contributed to this story.

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