Street racing/stunt driving charges down more than 50% on OPP-patrolled roads in April compared to a year ago

Spike in street racing coincided with fewer vehicles on the road

Ontario Provincial Police laid 50% fewer street racing and stunt driving charges last month compared to April 2020, and OPP Sgt. Kerry Schmidt notes the spike in charges last spring happened when the pandemic was just underway, and the highways were quiet with not a lot of traffic.

“We were in a shutdown and the pandemic was just getting started,” said Schmidt. “We were seeing a significant increase in stunt driving and street racing, and driving complaints across the province.”

There were 825 stunt driving and street racing charges laid on OPP-patrolled roads in April 2020 compared to 400 last month.

In both cases, the majority of drivers charged were males aged 26 to 35.

While pleased the numbers are down, Schmidt said it is still one of those high-risk driving behaviours.

Schmidt said impaired driving charges were up last month compared to a year ago.

There were 618 alcohol or drug impaired charges laid on OPP-patrolled roads this past April compared to April a year ago when the figure was 515, a 20 per cent increase.