A TEENAGER is in a serious condition in hospital after crashing a motorbike into a wall.
The incident, which happened at 11.20pm on Saturday on West Shore Road in Granton, saw the 14-year-old thrown from the BMW 1150cc motorcycle before landing on nearby rocks.
Police and emergency services attended the scene and the teenager was rushed to Edinburgh Royal Infirmary, where he is receiving further treatment.
It is understood the motorbike he was riding was stolen.
The crash comes after a crime wave in the Forth and Inverleith wards saw police and community figures launch the StrongerNorth campaign last year in a bid to crack down on offending.
Children as young as 12 have been caught stealing motorbikes and terrorising locals, with Police Scotland’s helicopter brought in for days at a time to try to combat the problem.
Officers said the chopper was responsible for a 90 per cent fall in the number of juvenile motorbike thefts reported to police while it was in action over the north of Edinburgh.
But in June, the force’s Chief Constable Sir Stephen House admitted thieves can snatch cars and motorcycles without fear of pursuit by the police – due to concerns chasing suspects could cause a road accident.
Edinburgh’s Chief Superintendent Mark Williams said officers were appealing for anyone with information about Saturday’s incident to come forward. He said: “This was a terrible incident that has left a local boy badly injured. Thankfully it wasn’t more serious as the consequences could have been fatal.
“What it does, sadly, is highlight the risks faced by those who choose to ride stolen motorbikes and it demonstrates the impact this can have on both the individual, their families and the community.
“We are appealing for anyone with information regarding this incident to contact us immediately.
“In unqualified hands motorbikes are extremely dangerous and tackling the theft of motorbikes and vehicles will continue to be a focus for local officers.”
Saturday night’s crash followed another incident earlier in the day that saw a pensioner die after his car ploughed into a lamppost.
The 69-year-old was driving on the on the B1348 Musselburgh to Prestonpans coast road, west of Prestongrange Museum, in the early hours of the morning when the incident happened.
He was found inside a red Ford Galaxy on the eastbound verge, facing west, by a passing motorist and reported to police at around 2.25am.
Emergency crews rushed to the scene and the man was taken to the Edinburgh Royal Infirmary, where he was later pronounced dead. It is understood the crash happened after the pensioner suffered a medical incident while driving.
He is believed to have started his journey in the Port Seton area and police are now investigating.
Police Sergeant Neil Inglis said: “We are eager to speak to anyone who may have been in the area at the time of the incident, particularly if they were on the B1348 in the early hours of Saturday morning.” Community figures said the stretch of road was not known as an accident blackspot, while a hand-written message on flowers left at the scene said: “God Bless RIP from taxi driver.”