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Illegal Street Racing

By: Sally Aquire - Updated: 26 Aug 2012 | comments*Discuss
Street Racing Illegal Street Racing Drag

Street racing usually refers to the illegal car racing that takes place on public roads. There are several different types of street racing, including drag racing and street road racing. In the UK, street racing is a popular activity, despite the fact that it is illegal on most types of roads.

Why is Illegal Street Racing Popular?

Street racing is particularly popular with young 'boy racers', who see it as a form of entertainment. In many cases, illegal street racing results in a community in which members enjoy the thrill of knowing that their street races will probably be intercepted by the police, who are likely to then give chase to the competitors.

Illegal street races give members of this community the opportunity to show off their vehicles, and this is often a key part of the desire to race them against other members of the community.

Illegal street races are often organised to settle arguments and bets within the illegal street racing community. In this situation, the winner of the race automatically wins the dispute.

Another reason for its popularity is the fact that bets are often placed on who will win specific street races (by other members of the illegal street racing community.

Street Road Racing

This type of street racing involves two or more competitors avidly chasing one another until the 'loser(s)' give up the fight. Whoever is leading the race can choose the course that the race follows, meaning that the other competitors must follow this lead. There is no set finish to the race – it ends when the winner is the only competitor left in the race.

Drag Racing

This type of street racing involves a minimum of two competitors racing against each other in a race that never deviates from a straight line. While some forms of drag racing are legal if they take place on specialist racing tracks, drag racing on public roads tends not to be. Legally organised drag races tend to last for around a quarter of a mile, but there is not necessarily any set distance in illegal drag racing. Instead, the competitors decide on the distance to race, and the winner is deemed as the competitor who outperforms the other vehicle(s). If this is not immediately clear which competitor this is, it can be decided by a mutual vote or a re-race.

What are the Dangers of Illegal Street Racing?

As illegal street racers generally do not have access to the safety clothing and equipment that is used in legal street racing competitions, it is common for competitors to get injured or worse.

The fact that illegal street races take place on public roads means that regular road users are put at risk when these races are being conducted. As they are not legally organised, the roads are not closed off while the races are happening. In addition to this, if illegal street races are regularly conducted on the same public roads, it can wear away the road surface. This makes it more likely that accidents will occur, as well as increasing general wear and tear to the vehicles that use the roads.

Deterring Illegal Street Races

Speed cameras are often put up in areas that are known to host illegal street races. However, these have a tendency to be tampered with so that they no longer work, and therefore they are often relatively useless in terms of identifying the competitors.

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