Checking in on Syracuse Police’s crackdown on drag racing along Erie Boulevard East

Local News

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — Part of the fun for many classic car enthusiasts is showing what their wheels can do, but that need for speed is being met with concern, especially along a stretch of Erie Boulevard East in Syracuse, where drivers are known to drag race.

We’ve gotten countless complaints about the issue on the Your Stories line. While police have upped the number of patrols near Erie Boulevard East, Midler Avenue, and Seeley Road, with the Syracuse Nationals in town, the city is reiterating its warning to obey the law.

“We’ve seen a slight reduction when we do staff the details,” said Sgt. Matthew Malinowski, a spokesperson with the Syracuse Police Department.

More officers patrol the area on Friday and Saturday nights when racing is at its peak, but they can’t be there 24/7.

“Remove the law from it, these two people that were killed in a vehicle just shows the dangers of engaging in this activity,” said Malinowski.

Syracuse police say a 22-year-old man driving nearly three times the posted speed limit on Monday night, with his 14-year-old brother in the passenger seat, was racing an SUV when he lost control of his car on Erie Boulevard East, hitting a light post and a tree before that car burst into flames.

“The ultimate punishment would be death and we don’t want to have that in our community,” said Malinowski.

The Syracuse Police Department says it will continue strictly enforcing vehicle and traffic law violations that happen in that area on Friday and Saturday nights.

Violations include but are not limited to speeding, contest racing, reckless driving, equipment violations and driving while intoxicated.

NewsChannel 9 obtained video from the night of June 7 showing how big of a problem that area has become.

Dozens of cars gathered at a gas station. Syracuse Police officers were there that night and say tickets were issued.

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