Recent reports about street racing are raising concerns among residents of Baton Rouge. The racing and stunt driving blocked sections of I-10 and eventually led to police issuing citations and impounding a vehicle.
This illicit activity has local motorists worrying about the safety of public roads and wondering what the community can do about it.
Baton Rouge as a hot spot for dangerous driving
Unfortunately, the statistics do not paint local roads in a favorable light. Numerous lists rank Baton Rouge as one of the top 10 most dangerous cities to drive in. The area hits the number two spot due to the number of fatalities and share of fatal collisions with drunk drivers.
Additionally, I-10 in Ascension Parish is one of the deadliest stretches of road in the country. The hazards are most notable around the holidays. Unsurprisingly, the recent illegal street racing event occurred during the holiday season. Participants promoted the competition on social media during the days leading up to the unlawful exhibition.
Increased penalties for street racing
The East Baton Rouge Parish Council is working with law enforcement to address the issue of unsafe driving on public roads. The governing body doubled the potential fines for street racers and spectators on public roads. An offender could also receive three months of prison time and lose one’s driver’s license for participation in these events.
Officials are hopeful that harsher penalties and increased policing will discourage further racing on public streets and make Baton Rouge’s roads safer. In the meantime, conscientious motorists should take precautions and avoid hazardous locations when possible.