Mayo residents plagued by "Fast and Furious-style" boy racer meetings
The long-running Hollywood franchise is said to be the cause for "an increasing number of illegal driving stunts" in Mayo.
Residents in Mayo are being plagued by "Fast and Furious-style" boy racer meetings, according to the county council.
Road safety officials have warned that meet-ups, reminiscent of scenes from blockbuster franchise The Fast and the Furious, have soared in popularity since the first lockdown.
And with the latest installment in the series F9 out now, Mayo County Council has said there has been an increasing number of illegal driving stunts by "boy racers" in industrial estates and on rural roads across the county.
Road Safety Officer at Mayo County Council Noel Gibbons said in a statement: “In the early days of lockdown there was a particular problem with drivers speeding on quieter roads.
“Whereas the Gardaí quickly cracked down on this speeding, we’re concerned these cruising-style events appear to be proliferating out from the larger towns into rural areas, where local youths have discovered their roads are much quieter at night and are difficult to monitor with lookouts and advertising the meetups on social media channels, but the Gardaí still have managed to seize some vehicles because of some modifications made to them that renders them unroadworthy”.
As such, Mayo County Council is turning to CCTV in a partnership campaign with An Garda Síochána to stamp out boy racers doing "donuts" on public roads, endangering their lives and the lives of others.
Mayo County Council said: "The CCTV cameras are placed with signage at known locations where this behaviour is taking place and the video footage with the offenders on it is forwarded to the Gardaí."
In particular, people near the landfill site in Newport have been plagued by these "Fast and Furious-style race meetings" for months.
“Since the latest Fast and Furious release in the past week, there has been a noticeable increase in the number of roads left with the markings from the previous night’s activities of drivers speeding and doing ‘donuts’ on public roads,” said Gibbons.
“Residents have reported incidences of drivers racing, skidding, honking horns, flashing lights, and blaring loud music. We would advise young people with an interest in cars to join a motorsport club where they can enjoy driving in a safe and controlled environment ”
A spokesperson for the An Garda Síochána from Castlebar Garda station issued a warning this week about such activity.
They said: “Acts of excessive speeding, drifting, and ‘donuts’ on public roads are dangerous and undertaken without any consideration for other road users.
“All it takes is one mistake, a lapse in concentration, or one fault with a vehicle for something to go tragically wrong.”
Gardaí have said they will be pursuing those who break road traffic laws and that there are a number of covert and high visibility operations planned to address the issue.
They added that if members of the public witness these driving acts, they should contact their local Garda station immediately. Complaints will be treated with strict confidence.