Anyone who has watched the Fast & Furious movie series is familiar with street racing culture. They may not know is that this lifestyle is quite popular though, and closer to home than many realize. In late July, a young woman from Scranton, Pennsylvania was taken into custody for her involvement in a street racing crash. The vehicle she was driving, a Nissan350z, sped up 3rd Street in Philadelphia around 10 a.m. in the morning, swerved out of control, hit a parked vehicle, and hurt a pedestrian.
Hit and Run
The driver fled the scene, but since her car had distinguishing decals on it, police were able to locate it. The pedestrian was also found after law enforcement officers made a public appeal to help find her. She has bruises and a possible concussion but is recovering. The police believe that bystanders helped her get medical attention.
The driver’s attorney claims that the “street racing hit and run” was an accident, and that she left the accident scene because she feared for her own safety. A video of the incident was obtained, and it shows several males telling the driver to leave.
As the investigation continues, many are concerned about street racing and the dangers it presents to bystanders and others. Young drivers are drawn to street racing because of the adrenaline rush and camaraderie with other fans. Although some head to race tracks, many prefer streets because there are no fees charged. These drivers may be aware that this is more hazardous, but they also find it more exciting. They avoid highways and high-traffic areas, but the dangers of racing on quieter streets are very real.
Many crashes are linked to vehicle modifications that are made after the cars are purchased. Changes to a car’s brakes, steering, and suspension allow them to handle speeds of up to 200 miles per hour in some cases, but drivers may not be able to handle it. Even an experienced driver can easily lose control of a modified car and spin out of control.
Some states have bans on certain aftermarket modifications that are seen on street racing cars. These include nitrous oxide, some mufflers, halo lights, and tinted windows. Although it may be hard to prove that the driver was street racing instead of speeding, these modifications can be helpful for distinguishing racers from speeders.