London Mayor Boris Johnson has said the Olympic competitors in this summer's marathons and other competitions taking place on the streets of London, will not be exempt from on-the-spot fines or even arrest if found to be dropping litter during those events. Issuing the warning from County Hall yesterday Mayor Boris Johnson said Olympic athletes need to realise that once outside the Olympic Village they will be expected to abide by the same laws as everyone else. Speaking from County Hall yesterday the recently re-elected Mayor of London explained,
"Many young people will be watching those events at home on their televisions and hoping to follow in their footsteps in future Olympics. If they were to see these athletes throwing empty plastic bottles and fruit juice cartons down onto the London streets after drinking them then our young people will think it's alright for them to do the same. It's very important that their heroes set a good example by ensuring they place their used drinks containers into the bins along the routes of their respective races. In addition the cost to London's council tax payers to clear up all the mess these athletes would otherwise be leaving on the streets would be immense, and I am determibned to keep those costs down to an absolute minimum."
The Mayor pointed out there will be plenty of litter bins along the race routes for competing athletes to discard their litter. Asked whether those taking place in the cycling road races would also be included he said there would be no exceptions.
"I am a cyclist myself," he said, "and so I do realise how difficult it can be when travelling along at speed to always be able to throw one's rubbish into litter bins without sometimes missing the target. What I do is to carry a plastic carrier bag with me hooked over the handlebars so that when I'm out cycling and have an empty carton of fruit juice or government document to throw away as rubbish I simply drop it into the bag then burn the contents later. London 2012 logo carrier bags will be issued to all the competitors taking to the streets of London this summer. The litter bins are there to be used, no exceptions," he said.
Assures Boris, "There will be no need for the competing cyclists this summer to come to a complete halt or to dismount from their bikes in order to safely throw away their rubbish because in addition to the London 2012 logo handlebar carrier bags there will also be, at various points along the routes of those events, mobile bin officials who will be holding out special London 2012 logo litter bins at an angle to make it easier for any approaching competitor wanting to throw away rubbish to hit the target without needing to stop or even slow down, though of course they must stop at any red traffic lights."