I’m not sure why racing on a public road full of other cars and trucks doesn’t seem like a terrible idea to people, but it is. If simple logic doesn’t get the concept across, maybe this wreck, caused by a race between a Challenger and a Charger, will. Three are dead, and the carnage of the multi-car wreck closed California’s 5 freeway for the better part of a day, according to police.
The wreck happened about midnight Saturday morning, on a stretch of the 5 freeway near the city of Commerce, not far from a massive outlet mall inexplicably designed to look like a Babylonian or Assyrian temple. Most Angelenos know this well-travelled stretch of the 5, and any rational person would likely think it would be a terrible place to race.
Sadly, rational people were not driving the Dodge Challenger and Dodge Charger that were involved in the race. The two cars were racing at about 85-90 mph in the southbound lanes when the Challenger attempted to pass (on the right) a car traveling at reasonable speed, according to ABC 7.
The car simultaneously moved to the right to get out of the Challenger’s way, but all this non-straight-line driving flustered the Challenger’s driver, who lost control of his car, crashing into a UPS truck.
The big-rig UPS truck went over the center divider, sheared the roof off a Nissan, killing the two people inside, before landing on a Ford Explorer in the Northbound lanes. Here’s a tweet of the resulting wreckage, after all the fires were out:
The driver of the UPS truck was killed as well, bringing the total killed to three, with more injured.
From the story:
One of the victims killed in the Nissan was identified by her family as 19-year-old Michelle Littlefield. Her family said Littlefield worked at Six Flags Magic Mountain along with her three friends. Littlefield’s family said the group had spent the day at Disneyland and was heading home when the crash occurred.
The driver of the Challenger, 35-year old Dealio Lockhart, admitted to CHP officers that he had been racing. He’s 35? This is bad enough when an 18-year-old idiot is involved; Lockhart is way too old to be doing stupid shit like this. The driver of the dark-colored Charger fled the scene and as yet has not been identified.
Anyone who has driven a fast car can understand the mindless allure of street racing. Seems like it could be harmless fun, right? But once you mix speed, overconfident drivers, and other vehicles, the result is the horrific chaos you can see in these pictures.
The LA area has a number of great racetracks and drag strips. Take the race there, and don’t kill anybody.
If you’re concerned that human driving will become illegal in the autonomous car future, it’s up to you to discourage acts of idiocy like this. Moron street racers are killing people, and it has to stop.
Contact the author at firstname.lastname@example.org.