A CAMPAIGN to stop boy racers in Monkspath has been launched before a member of the public is ‘seriously injured or killed’.
The anti-social problem has been escalating in recent months – with unacceptable noise levels and dangerous driving along the dual carriageway adjoining the Tesco superstore where the drivers meet in the car park late at night.
Solihull Councillor Ken Hawkins (Cons/Blythe) has launched the petition after being inundated with complaints from angry, upset and fearful local residents.
The petition, which can be found via his website: www.cllrkenhawkins.co.uk – and has already been signed by 207 people at the time of going to press.
The petition has been launched following two weekends of serious problems with the numbers of cars increasing.
More than a hundred cars have been converging on the car parks of the Tesco and Notcutts stores, making noise, revving engines, smoking tyres and then speeding on the local roads.
Local residents have been quick to sign the petition – detailing their fears and concerns.
One local resident said: “I have been caught up in this once when I went to the Tesco at Monkspath on a Sunday night.
“I had mistakenly thought it was open 24hrs 7 days a week.
“As the car park was so busy, I further assumed Tesco was open. I soon realised that it was shut and that I was surrounded by a huge ‘meet’. It was terrifying.
“I was pregnant and alone. As I tried to leave the carpark, the cars all began leaving and racing down the Stratford Road.
“I was surrounded. It was awful.”
Another angry local said: “I’m signing (the petition) because this is causing distress both through the noise levels and dangers on the roads very close to where I live.
“If this does not stop it is only time before there is a serious accident.”
Speaking to The Observer this week Meriden Ward policing Inspector Allan Green said the force was aware that large numbers of vehicles have been congregating in the Bickenhill and Shirley areas causing noise and disruption to local businesses and residents.
He added: “We are working with the local community and partner agencies to develop a bespoke plan to deter and prevent future gatherings.
“The owners of any vehicles identified as participating in this type of activity will be dealt with robustly by my officers.
“This could include seizing vehicles or prosecuting drivers for motoring offences.
“Where appropriate we will contact the drivers’ insurers who may review the condition of that person’s policy.
“I am aware of the impact that this type of anti-social behaviour has on people living in the vicinity and I would urge anyone with information about who may be participating in these events to contact Solihull police on 101 or alternatively information can be given anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.”
A spokesperson for Tesco said the company would work with the police to assist them in any way they could.