December 8, 2023

‘People are going to die’: Warning lives are at risk if boy racing continues

Road safety campaigner Clive Matthew-Wilson warns people are going to die if boy racing continues.

A road safety campaigner warns lives are seriously at risk if boy racing activity continues.

It comes after a person was hospitalised near Palmerston North over the weekend after being struck by a car doing burnouts.

And residents across the country are calling for action.

Burnt rubber lines a street in Christchurch with the road surface ripped up nearby. It’s a trademark of boy racer activity which Bromley locals are fed up with.

“They just come around here – scream, burn the tires out, set the car on fire then take off somewhere else,” one said.

Tim Martin works nearby and has to deal with the aftermath most days. He’s complained to the council but says nothing gets done.

“There’s been talk about putting barriers or spikes or something to deter it, but I doubt we will,” he told Newshub.

“You’re thinking one of these times you’re going to see a couple little legs go flying through the air, something like that,” another person said.

In Himatangi near Palmerston North over the weekend that’s exactly what happened. One person was seriously injured after being wiped out by a car doing burnouts.

“Locals get really, really intimidated,” said road safety campaigner Clive Matthew-Wilson. “Past that point, people are going to die.”

On the same night, a large crowd gathered to do burnouts near Ngāruawāhia.

Bottle-O owner Ash Parmar believes it led to what he calls a delayed Police response when a woman was viciously assaulted in his Ngāruawāhia store in a separate incident.

“On that night I know for a fact that boy racing was a significant issue,” he said.

“Police had to come from Cambridge to deal with the situation – that makes no sense – it’s a long way.”

Matthew-Wilson said unfortunately the activity won’t go away – but more could be done to try to reduce it.

“Speed bumps, chicanes, roundabouts. What they do is they stop people just taking off at 150km/h down a road,” he said.

Or doing burnouts to prevent accidents like in Himatangi.

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