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As Illegal Street Racing Becomes a Growing Problem, Lawmakers End the Trend

Home » Blog » As Illegal Street Racing Becomes a Growing Problem, Lawmakers End the Trend

by | May 28, 2019 | Florida Laws

The thrill of speed and the chase!

Most of us would love to embrace it – but fully indulging in street racing can get you in serious trouble.

Drag racing, highway racing, and street racing are illegal on the streets of Florida.

You can expect criminal prosecution in most of these circumstances.

Racing is also illegal in private parking lots or other areas not licensed or authorized for racing. If the authorities catch you street racing or drag racing, it’s likely you’ll be taken off to jail.

The Florida Drag and Street Racing Scene

Going fast is part of life in South Florida. Trying to go faster than another car or motorcycle on Florida’s public streets or roadways has always been illegal.

Everyone expects to see revving engines and burning rubber at a licensed racetrack.

But most don’t expect to see drag racing on Florida public streets.

Bikers make up part of Florida’s street racing scene. The illegal practice is said to be a growing concern by the authorities. Orange County stated that its Sheriff’s Office has made a sizeable amount of arrests in relation to street racing.

Deputies reportedly arrested 152 people in 2016 in connection with illegal drag racing. That number rose even further to 226 the next year.

To help slow down this trend, the agency created an anti-street racing detail in March.

By the close of 2018, Orange County had given out 988 citations. These were alongside 199 arrests in relation to illegal street races.

Along US Highway 27, just north of I-595 in Broward County, there is a patch of concrete that boat owners use to pull off the highway.

From here, they back their vehicles into a canal running into Lake Okeechobee.
That area of pavement serves another purpose too, however. It is also a place for those with fast cars to gather.

Here people can compare tires, engines, putting them up against each other. They do this, before turning back onto the US-27 to burn rubber.

There is a strong culture around street racing. Racers use cameras with specialized microphones. This lets them take high-quality videos of themselves breaking the law.

Addressing the Drag and Street Racing Problem in FL

Lawmakers all across Florida are looking for solutions to these problems. They want to give additional power to law enforcement. In particular, the ability to arrest those involved with illegal street racing.

The lawmakers behind the bill said dozens of people have complained about officers not being able to stop the racers.

Now a new bill would mean that if someone else records that racing, that video can be used as evidence to arrest someone. Gangs of racers have been seen on cameras on roads in the Central Florida area.

Lawmakers are giving more power to those with a badge to impose tougher sentences on illegal racing.

A bill was passed by the Senate, after passing the House earlier this month.

This bill will give an officer new powers to deal with drag racers. They will be able to arrest someone if they suspect probable cause that this person had been racing illegally.

And the big catch?

These powers are applicable even the officer didn’t witness the supposed racing themselves. This is currently required by the law.

That means they can make an arrest based on evidence from witnesses.

Florida Ticket Firm is experienced with drag racing cases. We specialize in drag racing defense. We can defend highway racing and drag racing, avoiding charges.

There’s lots to worry about than getting taken away for drag racing or highway racing. You may have your vehicle taken away and impounded. Even worse, it could be up for forfeiture.

Other Things To Think About

And there’s more. If you were behind the wheel for the drag race and had a passenger they may also be keeping you company in jail. Driving in Florida isn’t just illegal and a crime in Florida to drive in a drag race.

If you knowingly ride as a passenger in a drag race or street race, be prepared for the consequences.

You might think you’ve seen all of the familiar faces for your drag racing reunion.

In actuality, you’ll be surprised at how many people might join you. You, any passengers and your opponent could be joined by even more jailhouse company.

If you had someone responsible for traffic control at your drag race or speed exhibition, then they could be held accountable too.

It is, of course, illegal and a crime in Florida for anyone to divert, move or slow down traffic for a drag race.

Anyone responsible for promoting, coordinating, collecting money, etc could be facing Florida criminal charges.

On top of that, if you were a willing and knowing spectator, you could get penalized. You may be looking at a non-criminal moving violation. For this, you’ll receive a Florida Uniform Traffic Citation.

Avoiding Ticket Charges In The Florida Area

You should take care to develop safe habits on the road in order to avoid getting a ticket in the first place. But such is human nature. We aren’t all perfect. Many of us make mistakes.

It’s not ideal having to face criminal (or spectator) charges for racing by yourself.

Are you looking at Florida criminal charges related to street racing? Then get in touch with Florida Ticket Firm. We operate in the following areas –

  • Broward County
  • Miami-Dade County
  • Palm Beach County
  • Martin County
  • St. Lucie County

We can offer a free consultation with experienced criminal traffic lawyers. We know what to do. And you should too. Florida Ticket Firm can help.

Call us at 844.FLA.FIRM for more information. Alternatively, you can learn more about traffic laws and how to handle tickets on our website.