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If the police suspect you may have been involved in street or drag racing, they may take immediate action. Which one of the following is correct? The police may: If the police suspect you may have been involved in street or drag racing, they may take immediate action. Which one of the following is correct? The police may:

  • A. Take your vehicle away and sell it at an auction.

  • B. Take your vehicle from you and keep it stored for up to three months.

  • C. Take your vehicle to the local police station and keep it till the following morning.

    The correct answer is B
    Correct. If the police suspect you have been street racing your vehicle may be impounded for up to three months.

The legal definition of street racing in NSW

Section 115 of the Road Transport Act 2013 states:

A person must not organise, promote or take part in:

(a) any race between vehicles on a road, or

(b) any attempt to break any vehicle speed record on a road, or

(c) any trial of the speed of a vehicle on a road, or

(d) any competitive trial designed to test the skill of any vehicle driver or the reliability or mechanical condition of any vehicle on a road.

Street racing can be organised or impromptu, i.e. it could be that you turn up to a pre-planned race, or you spontaneously decide to race someone on the road, for example away from traffic lights. It is not only illegal to drive in a street race, but also to organise street racing activities.

The prosecution will rely on evidence given by the police officer(s) that witnessed the activity. If the offences happen at night, it's easier for them to misjudge what actually took place as speeds and directions are more difficult to evaluate in the dark. However, there are very clear indications that two or more vehicles might be racing:

Penalties for street racing

If you are found guilty of street racing you will automatically lose your licence for 12 months, but it could be for an unlimited period. The maximum fine is $3,300. Your licence can be confiscated on the spot. The court has the power to impose a range of penalties that also includes community service orders, good behaviour bonds, fines, disqualifications and imprisonment. The court will consider the reason for committing the offence, along with your previous driving history and any hardships that would be caused by you losing your licence.

Depending on other aggravating factors (for example, if you have been convicted before), you might also have your vehicle confiscated on the spot. Your vehicle can be confiscated for up to three months for a first offence.

If you are the owner of the vehicle but it wasn't you driving then you can make an application to the court for the return of the vehicle.

Second and subsequent offence convictions

For a second offence the vehicle could be confiscated permanently and sold or be used for crash testing by Roads and Maritime Services. The maximum prison term is two years for a second or subsequent offence.

If you are convicted of illegal street racing this will go on your criminal record unless you obtain a Section 10 which is a finding of guilt without a criminal conviction.

Permits for legal street racing activities

It is possible to obtain a permit to conduct a legal street race, but many criteria must be met.