Race Smart

 

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Take it to the Track

Race on the streets and you will lose your license, your car, even your life!

Dangerous illegal street racing is on the rise across the country. That is the reason so many cities and states consider street racing an epidemic and are taking a hard line against it. If you’re caught street racing, you could face penalties that include: costly fines, your car being impounded (or taken away permanently and crushed), having your license revoked and/or being arrested. Even if you are caught just watching an illegal street race, you are subject to stiff penalties for aiding and abetting street racing.

ILLEGAL RACING STATS

Consider the following stats, compiled from a variety of national and state transportation agencies, and it's easy to see the answer is to take it to the track. 

  • In 2001, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported that police listed street racing as a factor in 135 fatal crashes. The total was up from 72 street-racing-related fatalities reported in 2000.
  • According to the California Office of Traffic Safety, more than 800 citations for illegal street racing were issued in 2001.
  • In San Diego, where the street racing problem has been termed "epidemic," 16 deaths and 31 injuries were directly related to illegal street racing in 2001. The city's attorney's office prosecuted 147 illegal street racing cases in 1999, 161 in 2000, and 290 in 2001.
  • In Florida in 2001, 7,216 citations were issued for racing on the highway.  
  • In 1999, the Florida Department of Highway and Safety for Motor Vehicles reported 28 accidents related to illegal street racing, with 2 fatalities and 27 injuries. In 2000, the agency reported 39 racing accidents, with 1 fatality and 55 injuries. In 2002, there were 48 racing accidents, 1 fatality, and 60 injuries.
  • According to the NHTSA, motor vehicle accidents are the leading cause of death for people between the ages of 16 and 20.
  • The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety says 5,749 teens died in the United States from motor vehicle crash injuries in 1999.
  • Nationwide statistics show that 49 people are injured for every 1,000 who participate in illegal street racing.

As a result, city and state ordinances have been issued regarding illegal street racing. Though laws vary, here are some penalties faced by street racers:

  • You can be arrested and have your car impounded for 30 days.
  • If convicted of street racing or aiding and abetting a street race, you can be imprisoned for up to three months and fined up to $1,000. Spectators are subject to penalties as well.
  • Your driver's license can be revoked.
  • Your car insurance may be cancelled or the rates dramatically increased.
  • Cars in and around illegal street races are often issued equipment violations.

 To locate an NHRA Member track nearest to you, please use our NHRA Member Track locator.