By: A Staff Writer
This is extremely scary. Street racing in Southern California has become a pastime, a hobby – like baseball or a video game. An article in the Los Angeles Times that analyzes the issue of street racing, which has recently claimed several lives in the southland, says 100 people die each year in California alone because of this phenomenon. What a dangerous, reckless and inconsiderate way to exercise your freedom! It comes at the cost of innocent bystanders’ lives.
There have been a string of tragic collisions over the last year in California in street-racing related crashes, the Times points out. And police officers are scratching their heads about how to combat this menace. A lot of victims have been very young people – children as young as 14 years old. A lot of these cases involve young, inexperienced drivers behind the wheel of souped up vehicles. Consider these tragic cases:
* Four teenagers, Perris High School kids, died in a crash on their way to a San Diego trip in February * A 14-year-old Riverside boy also in February died when the car he was riding in slammed into a light pole during an impromptu street race * Two UC San Diego students died in January when their BMW crashed into two trees, again during a race * Then this week, a mother and her two children, 8 and 4, died when a street racer slammed into the family’s car.
The stupidity of it all is mind-boggling. Not only do the racers put themselves in unnecessary danger, they put innocent by-standers at high risk. Police say that earlier racers sought secluded streets and areas away from the city to challenge each other. But the latest trend is experiencing the high of racing on city streets. Wide roadways in the San Fernando Valley and right here in South Orange County have been scenes of heart-breaking crashes resulting from street racing.
The Times article states that between 2000 and 2006, 50,000 drivers pleaded guilty to illegal speed contests. Last year alone, the article says, 6,100 drivers pleaded guilty to drag racing. In most cases street-racing is a misdemeanor, but when it involves serious injuries or deaths, the charges are elevated to murder or vehicular manslaughter. For more information on the dangers of illegal street racing, visit Racers Against Street Racing.
If you or a loved one has been injured by an act of negligence, such as an illegal street race or a drag race, call Bisnar Chase Personal Injury Attorneys to discuss your case. This is unacceptable behavior, it’s illegal and you don’t have to take it.