The incidents of Illegal street racing and stunts are at an all-time high around the country. What might seem like a bit of harmless fun behind the wheel can turn dangerous or even deadly in the blink of an eye.
NBCDFW‘s Diana Zoga reports a new problem that could also pose a further danger to Dallas’s motorists.
On Sunday, October 18, at approximately 8:45 p.m., Dallas Police received a call that several motorists had brought all westbound traffic along the Woodall Rogers Freeway to a standstill for at least 20 minutes.
Cellphone video taken by motorists at the scene did not capture images of the incident’s culprits, but smoke filling the tunnel can be seen. On the video taken by motorist Austin DeBarry, the sound of tires squealing up on the freeway ahead of his vehicle can be heard.
“The whole tunnel was just full of smoke from the tire burnouts, DeBarry told NBC. “For it to be stopped on one of the busiest highways in Dallas, to be sure, and for all five or six lanes to be backed up, is kind of crazy.”
DeBarry said that he saw people standing outside of their vehicles, waiting on the road ahead to clear.
A spokesperson for the Dallas Police Department confirmed that 911 dispatchers had received calls of multiple vehicles racing along the Woodall Rogers Freeway. However, by the time that officers reached the scene, they could not find an offense.
The Dallas City Council recently imposed stiffer penalties for those caught participating in or observing street racing incidents when police catch them. Witnesses to other street racing and stunt incidents in the past have said that when the police arrive, the street racers simply speed away from the scene.
Dallas driver Isaac Maynard, who also witnessed the incident on Sunday night, told NBC 5 that it’s a real problem.
“Just trying to get to where you’re trying to get to, and then bam! You’re stuck in traffic,” Maynard said. “You never know what’s going on to the point where if there’s an emergency, you can’t get through or get by.”
Maynard understands that many young people participating in the street racing incidents probably just want to have fun, but they really should not be playing in traffic.