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Minister welcomes Counties-Manukau boy racer blitz

Minister welcomes Counties-Manukau boy racer blitz

Police Minister George Hawkins has welcomed last weekend’s Counties-Manukau based operation targeting so-called boy racers.

Mr Hawkins attended a briefing at Wiri Police base late last Saturday night, held before police launched the country’s biggest crackdown yet on boy racers.

The operation ended with 17 cars impounded and numerous notices issued for offences under the recently passed Land Transport (Street and Illegal Drag Racing) Amendment Act. Several notorious drag racing spots in the area were targeted, including Wiri’s Roscommon Rd.

Mr Hawkins said he believed the local community would also be pleased at the police crackdown. Since the new law was passed, many boy racers apprehended have proved to have been on restricted licences, carried passengers illegally, and often drove dangerously at excessive speeds.

However, their activities also affected the wider community.

“One example is when diesel oil is deliberately spread on the roads for burnouts. That oil leaves ordinary motorists in serious danger of skidding, with potential loss of life or injury,” he said. It was also a significant cost to councils to remove.

Noise from the racing was a particular hazard to the community.

“A resident who lives some distance from the hot spots, contacted my office to say last weekend was the first time in many months she had not heard their noise and was able to get a decent night’s sleep,” Mr Hawkins said.

He was also concerned at intimidation by the racers and their impact on local businesses.

“In one instance last weekend, the racers lined up across the road outside the entrance of a local service station, blocking the access for all other motorists. No one could get in or out and the owner was forced to close his business for the night. That is utterly unacceptable,” Mr Hawkins said.

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