Street racers often get their engines running in the dead of night. "At 1 or 2 in the morning, I hear cars zooming, racing and also motorcycles," said Ellen Ferrier of Bristol. For 30 years, Ferrier has woken up to racers speeding down James P. Casey Road.
"It's kind of an ideal spot, out the way, not downtown where police and other people are going to be that would notice it," Ferrier said.
But Connecticut lawmakers are taking notice.
A new bill hopes to put the brakes on illegal street racing. If it passes, in addition to fines and possible jail time, anyone caught racing would have their car impounded for 30 days and have to pay for it.
Illegal racing is an even bigger problem in Hartford.
Hartford Police spent 728 hours investigating street racing, Hartford Police Chief Darryl Roberts said. That's 30 24-hour days or an entire month that cost about $67,500.
"It ties up your police department when they should be doing other things," said Rep. Dicastro.
But drivers and their fans are proud of their races. If you head online to youtube.com, many have posted videos of cars racing down the streets. Many of the races are in Hartford.
When contacted by phone, one race spectator who posted the video on youtube.com said he losing their car may deter some racers, but not most, who do it for the rush and the cash.
"They just don't have any concern for anyone else," Ellen Ferrier said. :They're just out there doing their own thing."
The bill passed out of the Transportation Committee on Monday.