Illegal Racing on Tucson Streets

By on November 7, 2012

Some people have a need for speed, and they express it by participating in illegal street races. Although it may look like fun - such as when James Dean did it in "Rebel Without a Cause" — illegal street racing puts everyone on the road at risk, sometimes with deadly results.

Some local Tucson-area residents learned this lesson the hard way and were recently arrested for killing a man as they raced along North Oracle. The victim of the fatal Tucson car accident had not been participating in the street race.

Illegal Street Racing on the Rise

Although there are places where people can experience the thrill of speed in a legal and safe manner - like the Southwest International Raceway in Tucson - some people like the added adrenaline rush of racing in unsanctioned, more dangerous areas. But the risks created by illegal street races, which can be impromptu events or more organized in nature, far outweigh the benefits, says Raceway manager Jim Thomas.

"When a young person is doing 70 to 90 miles an hour on a 45-mile an hour road, it is a recipe for disaster," Thomas told KOLD News 13.

There are serious consequences for being involved in illegal street races, including hefty fines, license suspension or even jail time. Despite these consequences, the number of fatalities related to illegal street racing is on the rise.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), from 2001 to 2006 there were 804 people killed as the result of one of these races. NHTSA specifically defines racing as "driving "any vehicle in any race, speed competition or contest, drag race or acceleration contest, test of physical endurance, exhibition of speed or acceleration, or for the purpose of making a speed record." In addition, the agency reports that the number of street racing fatalities has steadily been on the rise in recent years.

Injuries that occurring during a motor vehicle accident, whether caused by illegal street racing or another reason, can lead to costly medical expenses, lost wages if the injured person is unable to return to work and, sometimes, funeral expenses. Tucson car accident lawyers can help victims and their families obtain the money they need to pay for the consequences of another person's negligence behind the wheel.