You may have seen drag racing shows glamorized on shows like “The Fastest Cars in the Dirty South.” Still, there is a dangerously popular alternative on Alabama and Mississippi roads and highways — street drag racing.
These races take place on back roads, highways in the middle of the night, and side streets. Illegal drag racing communities operate off the general population’s radar until someone gets hurt because of a race. When a drag race crash happens, injured people and their families deserve to understand their options and what their rights to compensation are.
In this blog, the Andy Citrin Injury Attorneys team discusses street racing in Alabama and Mississippi and explains what to do if you or someone you love is hurt in a drag racing crash.
What Is Drag Racing Like in Alabama and Mississippi?
Drag racing in Alabama and Mississippi isn’t always illegal. There are a variety of tracks that racing enthusiasts can rent to race their custom cars. However, drag races only last a few seconds, so some drivers choose to skip the fees and hold illegal races in the street.
While there are many different ways to participate in street racing, two forms are the most common.
Perhaps the most common form of street racing is street drag. Two cars roll up to a light, rev their engines at each other to confirm that they’re going to race, and then “floor it” as soon as the light turns green.
Illegal drag races can also occur on back roads, which can be even more dangerous than city races due to the loose gravel and winding nature of back roads. Local authorities in Mississippi have had trouble with drag races being held on Watkins Drive in Jackson.
One of the more reckless forms of drag racing is known as roll racing. Roll racing involves competing vehicles getting on the highway, slowing to a “rolling” speed of 35 miles per hour while spotter vehicles drive behind them to block traffic, and then going as fast as possible until one car, the winner, reaches the line of regular traffic. FOX10 News has reported roll races commonly taking place on I-165 in Mobile, and AlabamaNews.net noted races on I-85 in Montgomery.
What makes this form of street racing so dangerous is not only the speed but the proximity to general traffic. It takes a significant amount of time to slow from speeds as high as 200 miles per hour; when roll racing drivers misjudge the distance or push their luck, it can end in disaster for them and the drivers around them.
“Without the safety protocols, protective gear, and strict guidelines of a designated drag racing track, street racing can easily slip out of control. Drivers can crash into each other, collide with other cars on the road that aren’t involved in the race, or even hit pedestrians.”
While these races are a “secret” to the greater community, they are not entirely invisible. In many cases, crowds gather to watch races. When competing vehicles hold sprints on the highway, spotter cars drive slowly in an attempt to block regular traffic from interfering with the race. And in the worst-case scenarios, pedestrians suffer injuries when racers crash.
Why Street Drag Racing Is So Dangerous
Without the safety protocols, protective gear, and strict guidelines of a designated drag racing track, street racing can easily slip out of control. Drivers can crash into each other, collide with other cars on the road that aren’t involved in the race, or even hit pedestrians.
Street racing cars, while enhanced to be as fast as possible, are not equipped with safety equipment like roll cages or racing fuel, and drivers do not wear helmets or flame-retardant suits. And because these races take place on community roads, not closed tracks, many people also suffer from damaged or destroyed property.
Hurt in a Street Racing Accident in Alabama or Mississippi That Wasn’t Your Fault? Don’t Wait to Contact an Attorney
Street racing injuries are serious business. The increased speed and motivation to win create a formula for injuries that are profound and devastating. The process of fighting for the compensation you deserve after a crash is notoriously long and difficult. Working with a skilled lawyer is a critical way to protect your case, your options, and your future. If you were hurt in a drag racing accident through no fault of your own, our team is ready to hear your story and support you in making the best choice possible moving forward.
“If you were hurt in a drag racing accident through no fault of your own, our team is ready to hear your story and support you in making the best choice possible moving forward.”
Andy Citrin Injury Attorneys: Reliable Personal Injury Lawyers in Alabama and Mississippi
Our team of lawyers has over three decades of experience fighting for people hurt, injured, or killed through no fault of their own in Alabama and Mississippi. If you or someone you love suffered injuries because of a street drag racing crash, please don’t wait to reach out to us.
We can meet with you in a private, free consultation to help you understand your options and what to do next. To schedule time with our team of personal injury attorneys, contact us online or call our office at 251-888-8888.
Coker, A. (2015, July 2). New Alabama law targets illegal drag racing on rural roads. TuscaloosaNews.com Retrieved from https://www.tuscaloosanews.com/article/DA/20150702/News/605153544/TL
Snell, R. (2016, May 4). i-Team: Street Racing. AlabamaNews.net. Retrieved from https://www.alabamanews.net/2016/04/29/i-team-street-racing/
Tadlock, S. (2019, November 4). ‘Loud, dangerous, and so scary:’ Residents express fears of drag racing on Watkins Drive. WLBT3. Retrieved from https://www.wlbt.com/2019/11/25/loud-dangerous-so-scary-residents-fearful-possible-drag-racing-watkins-drive/
Weis, K. (2017, October 30). Illegal street racing in Mobile exposed by FOX10 News Investigators. FOX10 News. Retrieved from https://www.fox10tv.com/news/illegal-street-racing-in-mobile-exposed-by-fox10-news-investigates/article_1c347bc8-9380-57b5-b558-001a93c6453b.html
The content provided here is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice on any subject.