Law enforcement officials are working to raise the public’s awareness of illegal street racing and dangerous “street takeovers” occurring throughout California. In San Fernando Valley, these activities have caused both injuries and fatalities. Spectators gathering to create videos for social media does not appear to be helping the situation, as reported by the LAist.
You may have seen drag racing and other vehicle stunts featured in movies. In reality, however, racing a car on the public streets and street takeovers are both illegal and unsafe. Street takeovers are unlawful vehicular activities that generally involve closing off an intersection, such as at Ventura and Valley Circle Boulevard, so that a driver can speed into it and perform donuts.
Donuts and burnouts
A donut is a dangerous stunt in which a vehicle rotates continuously and creates circular skid marks on the street. The event tends to draw spectators who come to capture the action with their smartphones so they can post it to social media.
Burnouts are another popular stunt taking place in San Fernando Valley intersections. This involves spinning a parked vehicle’s wheels at high speed. Spectators take pictures or videos of the billowing smoke from the heat created by the rotating tires for uploading to online networks.
The danger to innocent bystanders
While street stunts and racing may appear to be fun to watch on social media, other drivers, innocent pedestrians and bystanders are getting hurt. Street takeovers can result in an unsuspecting driver coming home from work at night and getting hit by a stunt performer. Severe injuries or tragic fatalities may result. In such cases, authorities may hold a reckless driver responsible for causing harm or damages and charge him or her with a criminal offense.
If you or a loved one suffer harm during a street takeover, establishing fault is oftentimes not necessary. Maintaining records of your injuries, medical treatment and rehabilitation efforts may help in filing a claim for relief. You may also be entitled to compensation for pain and suffering and loss of wages when injured as a result of an illegal street race or takeover.