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Increasingly bold drag racers ignore residents, cops on American Legion Highway

The Bulletin reports on ongoing problems with drag races on American Legion Highway in Roslindale, which now attract as many as 100 racers at a time, many of whom seem disinclined to stop for police - at least until officers pull out their guns. Police say residents need to call them about the racers as soon as they hear them, rather than just stewing in their homes (scroll down past the stuff about the screaming, door-slamming couple at one local condo project).

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Comments

Points to the post about the speed limit.

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Sorry about that, and thanks.

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Speed humps every 100 yards would put a permanent end to drag racing here.

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The problem isn't the road - the problem is the people. No one was racing on that stretch 30 years ago.

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FALSE!!!!!

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They've been drag racing on American Legion since at least the 1990s. I saw it the crowds gathering then, and somehow I was on the road in the aftermath of a race in 2001. I believe when this was brought up earlier someone said it was being done in the 1980s.

So yeah, the people are the problem, but now it is the children of the people who did it at first.

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People have been racing on American Legion since atleast the mid 60s

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Like the Fonz,

BTW, if they remade Happy Days set in modern times, Fonzie would definitely have a neck tattoo.

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Does BPD have stop sticks or those retractable spike strip things like CHIP uses? Or are they more poorly equipped than Mayberry, PD in that capability too?

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Cars moving at high speeds, spike strips, and houses right next to the road... I can think of no way this could possibly go wrong.

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They SLOWLY deflate tires. They are designed to safely stop vehicles going these speeds.

Please try that newfangled Google thing before posting.

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-It's against policy and most likely the law.
-It can be dangerous for the person putting them out.
-If a motorcycle hits it, the person could die.
-For a small noise nuisance like this, other innocent vehicles would be in the area
-, and it probably is going to be almost impossible to even get them out in time. By the time you put them out, the car sees the police officer and simply stops drag racing.

All in all, a stupid idea.

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Then why do other cities around the country use them without issues?

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Most urban department do not have stop sticks. You need to "train" in them too, so if someone does get hurt you are covered. They are used (even in the policy) in felony pursuits where letting the vehicle go would cause seem sort of physical danger to other human beings.

Just google "stop sticks lawsuit" and you will see why they shouldn't be used in most situations.

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We're a small city police department no one's ever heard of.

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How about that thing with the garden hose and the nails that Mike Ehrmantraut made to stop the Mexican drug smuggler with 250 grand in his truck tires?

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Spike strips are designed to bring a car to a stop safely, without it losing control.

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Those require time to deploy, not something that can be done in the amount of time the drag racers are there before they disperse when the cops arrive. Those strips work in long chases, where there is some predictability about where the car being chased will be well ahead of it actually arriving at that location. With these guys, all the cops can do is pursue, or perhaps try to shoot the tires, but that's kind of dicey, too. Permanent structural impediments to speeding are the only practical solution.

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Once the cop arrives, quick-deploy spike strips take less than 5 seconds to set up.

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What is the idiotic reason they aren't putting in speed tables? They would cost next to nothing and could be put in in one day.

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No, I don't think so.

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You need to get out of the northeast sometime - I've seen them designed for speeds as high as 35-40 mph.

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Probably has to do with the amount of vehicles per day and average speed of those vehicles.

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They put them in in the mid-70s, across a couple of curves on the Eastbound side. One was under the footbridge near BU. They were abrupt -- almost like curbs. It was quite a shock to find them there the first time. I always wondered how many accidents they caused.

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They can put speed tables next to the school. This is not a numbered highway. It's not a "major thoroughfare". City is too chicken to do anything substantive there.

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Having a number or not doesn't change the physical characteristics of a road. https://goo.gl/maps/GGhob7D6S2y has a number, while https://goo.gl/maps/EeCewLiXmKA2 does not. Which do you think should have a higher speed limit?

"Major thoroughfare" doesn't have a strict definition, so there's no way to win an argument over whether this road is one or not. But I will show you a picture: https://goo.gl/maps/YYCV7H7w6nE2

As for the school, any kids who need a convenient walking route to the U-Haul place are out of luck, since walking across isn't allowed here: https://goo.gl/maps/H5NMXfrQpAo . So there's no reason to make cars slow down to speed-table speeds.

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"he thinks they may be monitoring the Police channel through a radio scanner and can hear the police coming."

Of course they are. Start with asking the residents to record videos, get some plates, go around asking these guys questions.

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Residents don't want to say anything because they're afraid their car or home (or even worse, them or a family member) will get sprayed with bullets by these idiots. That's why it's so hard to get good, law-abiding residents to go out an video these idiots. That takes balls. And never mind asking them questions.

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So your seriously implying that the people street racing are going to shoot you because you called the police.

1-how on earth would anyone find out who called the police from inside their home?

2-it is very ignorant for you to associate innocent drag racing with murderers. Considering the fact when I've witnessed people street racing on American legion they raced after the Wendy's which has no homes, intersecting streets, businesses, etc on that section.

3-who is really affected by street racing? Everyone is quick to say it puts people's lives in danger. While racing on an empty strip only those racing would be at risk so why do you even care. Plus can anyone name one incident where someone was injured while drag racing in the last 10-20 years.

4-easy solution to the problem build a drag strip near the Boston area. Or would you rather complain about the problem instead of trying to find a solution?

For decades this has been a problem but apparently it's only a problem when someone can't watch an episode of "days of our lives" without being bothered by the noise of a few cars. Some of you need to dig your head out of your A** and maybe worry about the real problems at hand such as the social and racial instability in this country or all the drug addicts on the methadone mile assaulting pedestrians breaking into homes and vehicles, shooting up dope in the middle of the day.

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2-it is very ignorant for you to associate innocent drag racing with murderers.

Innocent? Are they innocent of breaking multiple laws?

3- . . . Plus can anyone name one incident where someone was injured while drag racing in the last 10-20 years.

Yes, there are many accidents resulting from street racing, and it's willful idiocy to pretend otherwise. Is March of this year bad enough for you? Here's another one:
Former ‘Street Outlaws’ driver charged with murder in LA race deaths
If you actually cared, you could find several in MA within the stated time frame.

4-easy solution to the problem build a drag strip near the Boston area.

The people who race on the street are not interested in complying with the safety requirements that NHRA and AHRA sanctioned tracks have to impose. That would be too much like being a law-abiding citizen, and would ruin their fun.

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They exist! Just because they are in another state, doesn't mean that they aren't nearby. Like 30 miles nearby.

You are right - these idiots are not interested in legal racing any more than graffiti artists are interested in canvas or they would be up in NH doing it - they are more interested in being "street".

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4-easy solution to the problem build a drag strip near the Boston area. Or would you rather complain about the problem instead of trying to find a solution?

http://www.racingin.com/track/massachusetts.aspx

Also? New England DRAGWAY in EPPING NEW HAMPSHIRE!!!!

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These boneheads record themselves and post it online. Search "JDMASS"

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Aaayyyyy

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and sell them at auction.

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I'm relieved to hear they have the presence of mind to close the street!

“People have seen guys with flashlights out on American Legion basically redirecting traffic and closing off the street,” he said. “It was like the wild west, they had just taken over.”

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Find another way home.

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The drivers speeding through the red lights on Beacon Street in Back Bay are using a warning system of sorts. They honk their horns as they race through each intersection.

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So the city basically puts the blame on the residents. There are always speed traps on American Legion. The police haven't noticed the drag racing while they're sitting on Morton?
I saw about four adult punks on mini bikes/scooters flying up American Legion - the whole group surrounding cars on the sides and front, zipping in and out of traffic - and laughing all the while. There was a cop parked on Morton manning the speed trap when they flew by his car - nothing. He just sat there.
I'm not putting this on the police; I'm wondering what the officers are being told to do; starting with the useless mayor in City Hall

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Drag racing on American Legion goes back to the White administration to say the least. And speed traps at 2 in the afternoon won't help when they are racing after midnight.

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And murder has been committed since long before then.. So using your logic that makes killing all right. And I just saw a speed trap about 30 minutes ago when I was coming home from work; they're not just out there in the middle of the afternoon,

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But here's my followup. When you got to the strip mall, were there drag racers?

If you've followed this through Adam's links, you'd know that the police have been trying to break things up, but the racers have been listening to the scanner. Perhaps the cops are using deterrence?

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