While the cooler months have certainly helped to curb crime, incidents of street racing and hooning in Wagga have been becoming more and more problematic.
Aerial photographs taken of the Oura Road roundabout in recent days have shown the roundabout looking very worn out after some motorists took it upon themselves to do burnouts on the grass.
President of Wagga’s Neighbourhood Watch, Wayne Deaner, who worked in the emergency services for more than a decade, said he had seen hooning accidents end badly far too many times.
“You do see some horrific crashes – someone was doing ‘circle work’ once and someone watching them didn’t move quickly enough and got hit by the back of the car,” Mr Deaner said.
“Another time, one of the tires blew out during a burnout competition, and a piece of rubber flew out and hit someone in the face – he ended up in hospital.”
Mr Deaner said street racing and hooning around the North Wagga roundabout in question was particularly dangerous, given the number of heavy vehicles and trucks that pass through there on a daily basis to get to Bomen.
“You think about the other road users who have to go through there with debris, tires, wire, and that sort of stuff on the road, as well,” he said.
“That’s where it gets dangerous and, at the end of the day, they could hurt not only themselves but other drivers too.”
It is not just residents who have become concerned; street racers and hoons have also been on the police’s radar in recent weeks.
Acting Inspector Phil Malligan of the Riverina Police District said specialist police from Sydney visited Wagga earlier in the week as a part of Strike Force Puma and successfully apprehended two street racers.
“Having a driver’s licence and driving in a vehicle, you’re driving in a weapon that can cause injury and harm and potentially kill pedestrians, drivers, and passengers,” Inspector Malligan said.
“For that reason, police are out there targeting that, and we want to be able to get those drivers off the road, because people that are going about their normal business should not be subject to the dangerous driving of other motorists.”