Hoons: ‘Give us a spot’

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The recent talk of a police taskforce targeting hoon driving has prompted car enthusiasts to voice their opinions, calling on authorities to ‘give them a spot’.

Operation Deliver is a police taskforce targeting hoon driving, amongst other things, across the Yarra Ranges, with many local residents in Warburton and the Dandenongs fed up with being kept awake all hours of the night by cars racing and doing burnouts.

A roadside sign warning drivers of the police operation recently became a target for graffiti, with ‘give us a spot’ plastered across the face of the screen in blue spraypaint.

A car enthusiast, who wishes to remain anonymous, contacted the Star Mail to explain the meaning behind the tag, beginning by clearing up that the vandalism was not the work of them or anyone they know.

“For years, car enthusiasts or ‘hoons’ have wanted somewhere they can legally do what they do,“ they said.

“There aren’t many of us who just do it on public roads because we want to be assholes and endanger the public, most of us find very secluded areas, late at night, where the risk to people who are not involved is minimal.“

“Every time we find a nice empty spot, it is shut down by the cops. Right now, I believe that is fair enough, someone has to pay to maintain the roads, right?

“Most of us would not mind fees and charges or some kind of ‘toll’ to access an area where we can do what we want with our beloved cars. Most of us will sign liability waivers for when our cars are totalled or our bodies are harmed, yet this is a topic the police force and the government don’t want to address,“ they said.

A spokesperson from the Department of Transport said the department has “no plans to fund private, off-road racetracks“.

“Dangerous driving puts lives at risk which is why Victoria has tough laws in place to remove hoons from our roads,” the spokesperson said.

“All motorists have a responsibility to share the road safely, including driving within speed limit and to the conditions”.

Yarra Ranges Council said the idea of a place for car enthusiasts to go has never been discussed.

The Department of Transport reiterated the fact that drivers committing hoon-related offences can have their vehicles impounded and, if convicted by a court, may be ordered to complete a safe driving program which specifically addresses the underlying motivations contributing to hoon behaviour.

Victoria Police also introduced laws last year giving police the power to issue on-the-spot licence suspensions for excessive speeding.