Help get ‘hoons’ off the road

skaboy12 17 September 2008 77

[First filed: September 16, 2008 @ 09:16]

Hey All,

We are starting a lobby group called Ten Thousand Fists. It has been born out of all the complaining about ‘hoon’ activity recently. We will be pushing the government and AFP/ACT Policing to assist us in finding somewhere for the ‘hoons’ to go, therefore getting them off the streets and still allowing them to do what they want to do. We are trying to fight for both sides of the argument.

They want to be ‘hoons’ and you want them off the road.

Trying to stamp them out in force obviously isn’t working too well, judging by the fact that there are more of them at every meet they have, despite the police crackdown.

We are not asking for a dragway to be built. That is a war that won’t be won in the short term. What we are asking for is initially access to the AFP driver training centre on Sutton Rd. This facility is built to handle this sort of activity and it is easily accessible. It is also safe for those participating and spectating.

We will then be pushing for a specific burnout pad. These facilities are low cost to maintain, easy to build and will only be used once or twice a fortnight which will help on noise. We have already raised $15,000 (in a week) to go towards building the facility and will be conducting fundraising events in the near future.

As we are trying to make this fair for all of Canberra we would love it if you could support us. We have created a Facebook Group (search for Ten Thousand Fists), and would like to invite everyone to join it. We will be holding public meetings and inviting the AFP Commissioner and several politicians. We will also be allowing all sides of the story to be heard.

We can be contacted at 10thousandfist (at) gmail.com or at http://www.new.facebook.com/group.php?gid=24687954445&ref=mf

Should we give hoons easier access to the Sutton Road skidpans?

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77 Responses to Help get ‘hoons’ off the road
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jakez jakez 5:00 pm 17 Sep 08

You certainly are Mdme!

VicePope said :

The “consenting adults” argument works only in private relationships that have no effect on others.

VicePope, as I said if you can make a case then I will listen to it. I agree with the harm principle (narrowly defining harm to direct harm as one can see in On Liberty), and you will not find a stronger defender of property rights (including your own body) than myself. That said I think we need to take a closer look at your claims to see if they count, or even if they are true.I think some of them may be valid in the hypothetical, but not necessarily in this case.

1,

In this case, the rest of us will hear the noise, smell the fumes etc

Claims of smell and general annoyance cannot be considered to be a valid example of ‘harm’ as it renders Mill’s harm principle so broad as to be meaningless. I could say that I find the sound of you spewing forth your authoritarian viewpoints offensive. If we define harm to include indirect harm and subjective feelings, then one can claim that anything is harming them.

I find people that eat curry to smell bad, I find people that don’t shower to smell bad, in fact I find a lot of people smell bad (perhaps I’m a clean freak). I find these people to smell much worse than the smell of rubber. None of that however is a valid reason to advocate for some sort of coercive ban on curry, or non showering.

To address those points, we have zoning, and I don’t think the place would be near residential areas. Sutton Road is not in the middle of Kambah, it is out past RMC. I don’t think that in this case, your fears are valid.

be placed at risk by compromised vehicles (driven by excited people) on the road

I’ll echo mdme here and ask for some sort of pyschological (or other) evidence. Otherwise, this is just subjective opinion. Even if it were the case, the existence of a safe place to do motorsports would LESSEN the amount of this driving on regular roads, not increase it. We currently face the problem of having hoon driving on regular roads. THAT IS OUR REALITY NOW! This is a way to lessen that problem.

risk buying used cars that have been damaged through this kind of foolishness etc.

I think this point is just silly. Firstly, I’m not sure you can even make the case of some sort of hidden damage. Secondly, caveat emptor. We face risk throughout our lives and to be very frank, anyone who does not get an independent mechanic to look at a car before they buy it, is a bloody idiot and deserves what they get.

And we will probably wind up picking up the tab when someone errs in a burnout and runs through some people, or into a wall.

I am a big advocate of personal responsibility. People should be free to do as they please, but they must accept the consequences. To that end, we see that Government REMOVES personal responsibility. We have a health care system that incentivises stupid behaviour. I believe in a safetynet so that’s a burden that I think we should bare, however if we provide a legal avenue we will see that people will have to take personal responsibility.

Firstly, with regard to other people being injured on residential roads, WE HAVE THIS PROBLEM NOW! That is why we need a facility to get this behaviour off the residential roads and into a controlled environment. This will lessen that problem. For those that act the fool on residential roads, I absolutely believe THEY must pay the price, and our legal system needs to place a greater emphasis on restitution for harm to others. There are a number of consensual ways of achieving this (insurance) as well as integrating it into our criminal law.

Those who go to the racetrack/burnout facility must pay insurance and sign a waiver. They will have to pay the price for their activities.

Allowing consenting adults the freedom to do as they wish, setting up a system that ensures personal responsibility, and protecting property rights (including ones own body) allows us to live in a tolerant, pluralistic, and free society, while ensuring that people do not have to bear the brunt of those things that they have not had a contributing hand in.

This is not a perfect system, nothing is. However it is the most just and fair system for all as it is truly win/win.

mdme workalot mdme workalot 2:54 pm 17 Sep 08

Sorry for the double post – now I’m a 3-post nutbag 😛

mdme workalot mdme workalot 2:48 pm 17 Sep 08

Yes VicePope, but your points there merely echo those of people who want a place to engage in this kind of activity. People would be happy to do this so it doesn’t impede on anyone else’s right to enjoy themselves and their surroundings, but lobby groups prevent these facilities from existing. It ends up being a lose/lose situation.

As for the argument that these facilities promote risky behaviour on the roads, I really would like to see some research or definitive evidence that this is the case. Otherwise, I’m inclined to reject it as a subjective opinion.

mdme workalot mdme workalot 2:48 pm 17 Sep 08

Yes VicePope, but your points there merely echo those of people who want a place to engage in this kind of activity. People would be happy to do this so it doesn’t impede on anyone else’s right to enjoy themselves and their surroundings, but lobby groups prevent these facilities from existing. It ends up being a lose/lose situation.

As for the argument that these facilities promote risky behaviour on the roads, I really would like to see some research or definitive evidence that this is the case. Otherwise, I’m inclined to reject it as a subjective opinion.

VicePope VicePope 2:31 pm 17 Sep 08

The “consenting adults” argument works only in private relationships that have no effect on others. In this case, the rest of us will hear the noise, smell the fumes etc, be placed at risk by compromised vehicles (driven by excited people) on the road, risk buying used cars that have been damaged through this kind of foolishness etc. And we will probably wind up picking up the tab when someone errs in a burnout and runs through some people, or into a wall. So, it’s not a matter purely for the consent of the participants.

jakez jakez 2:24 pm 17 Sep 08

Well I’m sure it won’t be too hard. The vast majority of candidates are arrogant authoritarians.

I never said that you aren’t entitled to your opinion, I’m merely echoing madameworkalots point and suggesting you don’t force your opinion on consenting adults. If you can point to some harm you will accrue beyond an elevation of your self righteous consternation, then you mAy have a case.

VicePope VicePope 1:41 pm 17 Sep 08

Jakez – yup. It’s called opinion. I consider my opinion on this is an informed one. I know that (a) these activities create a lot of noise, (b) these activities are associated with the discharge of some difficult pollutants, (c) these activities are all intrinsically useless, especially in the context of the future of fossil fuels, (d) these activities are likely to lead to some risk of injury or damage and (e) these activities can reasonably be argued to promote ill-mannered and dangerous behaviour on the public roads.

You may have your opinion, and I’m sure you have some logical basis for it; there are probably pollies around who support your position. I disagree with it, and I seek political representation by someone who shares my views.

32roadster 32roadster 12:36 pm 17 Sep 08

Is this the same bunch of dudes that I spoke with about a new dragway at the Shannons auto show held at old government house 3 years ago and claimed and I quote, what a load of ####, will never ####### in Canberra and anyway we have our own race track, IE, the highway, unquote, great attitude, any wonder the jacks are down on you.
There are 2 groups of good people that have been working together for many, many months in the Capital to again establish motoring and motorsport rights that consecutive governments have abused.
As I said these people have been working BLOODY HARD and LONG at their personal expense and are certainly looking to have the goods but while other groups come along, which is your democratic right the government and that stupid bloody woman in Hackett look on it as fragmentation and the media eat up what they say.
I am old and I have fortuantely raced and or shown my vehicles all around this great country but I have NEVER EVER seen a place that diciplines of motorsport would prefer to shoot each other in the foot than support each other, quite frankly it is a shame, actually it is a bloody disgrace.

jakez jakez 12:12 pm 17 Sep 08

So basically because you are old and don’t like motorsport, you grant yourself the authority to tell other people what to do?

I don’t think that’s a satisfactory claim to power by any stretch of the imagination. Why don’t you just leave people alone and worry about matters that affect you?

VicePope VicePope 11:31 am 17 Sep 08

Thanks for the responses – I’m a bit sad that no pollies have stuck their hands up. All I wanted, and it hasn’t happened.

Jakez – two reasons. First, I’m old enough to be the grandparent of pretty well everyone on the planet and fierce looking enough to do the hard bits of the task. Second, it’s pretty clear to me that anyone agitating in favour of horsepower-related meaningless activity cannot be an adult in many sense of the word. I made the comment because the response I was anticipating was similar to that received by a parent imposing limits, not because I am such a parent in relation to the lovers of what is laugghingly called “motor sport”.

TylersMayhem – thanks.

MdmeWorkalot – idiot vehicular behaviour (eg burnouts, drag racing) is illegal because it’s offensive (noise and emissions) and can be dangerous. Making it legal would stop it from being criminal, but would not make it inoffensive or completely safe. There are previous threads where there is discussion of whether a regulated environment would alleviate or aggravate the problem elsewhere.

FelixTheCat – yes, I know what a burnout is. It is an activity that makes a great deal of pointless noise while placing excessive stress on vehicle components, so that their failure is more likely, at the time or later. If you want to see a burnout, there are a few websites where those enthusiasts who have both a video camera and a friend to operate it have displayed their exploits.

P1 – agree that Floriade is a waste of time and effort, as well as a great deal of public money. Not convinced by the claims of net economic benefit (any more than I am for Summernats).

FelixTheCat – lots of things are dangerous (as any examination of workers’ comp cases will reveal). But most of them aren’t quite as pointless and offensive and dangerous to others as idiot vehcular behaviour.

G-Fresh G-Fresh 11:01 am 17 Sep 08

lame

jakez jakez 10:31 am 17 Sep 08

The thing is though VicePope, who gave you the authority to be other adults parent?

tylersmayhem tylersmayhem 9:14 am 17 Sep 08

I really cannot disagree with any comment made by VicePope on this thread. Well said!

Hoons, or car enthusiasts need to keep it at the forefront of their mind that ANY reckless driving is ILLEGAL! So regardless of what you like or enjoy doing, if is is reckless driving, it’s breaking the law and it’s not allowed – period.

I think if we foster this behavior by supporting and providing an area for hoons to “have fun” and break the law, it just reflects an attitude by the general public as acceptance of dickhead behavior.

I have an idea for skaboy12 and his posse. Save you money, equip your cars with surveillance equipment and drive around capturing these hoons and report them to the cops (like was on A Current Affair the other week). If I was shown some stats that this was reducing the problem, I;d happily chip in a few bob to support your cause. Unfortunately you won’t be getting any of my funding to pay for a bunch of groncks to have fun on my coin.

The_Soarer The_Soarer 8:49 am 17 Sep 08

Just to clear up a few things:

The Sutton Road complex use to be a Police complex. It is no longer owned by the Police (although they do still use it) and instead operates as a public driver training venue. http://www.suttonroad.com.au for more info. This is the complex that has a large flat asphalt area, a track on the hill, and the skidpan.

The Police now have their own complex on Majura Road. There is no skidpan out there, just a large asphalt area and some tracks. You will not get access to those.

If you want access to the skidpan, asphalt or track on Sutton Road the easiest and most appropriate way for your group would be to contact http://www.fifthgear.com.au . They hold public and private skidpan days, as well as defensive, advanced and performance driver training. They also hold their own insurance, no need to get it yourself. I’ve been on a few of their courses and skidpan days and they are awesome, very well run, very fun, and you learn a hell of a lot.

mdme workalot mdme workalot 8:46 am 17 Sep 08

I’m not going to yell at you Vicepope – I disagree with you, but I respect your opinion.

There are numerous hobbies and pastimes I dislike – dirt-biking, horse riding, hunting to name a few. However I certainly appreciate that people like different things and just because I dislike it does not mean that it is wrong. Cars are generally one of the largest investments people will make in their lives, so it stands to reason that people take pride in it and enjoy exploring what they can do with it – kind of like renovating houses and developing backyards. I know for me, I spend more time in my vehicle than at home or anywhere else with the exception of work, so I much rather driving something nice that makes a statement, as opposed to something that gets me from a to b. This may be different if I only drove for 20 minutes a day.

While I certainly understand that you believe the majority of ‘hoons’ endanger others on the road, I strongly disagree. As a matter of fact (and I’m making a huge generalisation here) I submit that it is not ‘hoons’ as such behaving like idiots, but young blokes who’ve only held a licence for less than 3 years. As most of you would be aware, increased risk-taking by this demographic is supported by road accident statistics. Unfortunately, this generation have parents who are too scared to say no to them, and these same parents quite happily go out and spend $40K on a hotted-up vehicle for them, whereas for the older generations they generally had to scrimp and save to buy an old Datsun for $500. In my opinion, the difference is not the vehicle itself, it is the respect the driver holds for that vehicle, and the consequences of damaging it. If I had crashed my bomb that I bought myself, I would have been without a car until I could afford to fix it. If I crash the beast my parents bought for me, I’d ask them to fix it for me and oh yeah, I’m borrowing your car in the meantime. Does that make sense?

It is unfortunate that genuine car enthusiasts get tarred with the same brush as idiots who happen to have nice cars. I don’t know what the solution is though…

Felix the Cat Felix the Cat 6:52 am 17 Sep 08

fabforty said :

Felix the Cat said :

VicePope – while I tend to agree that burnouts and the like are stupid but if done under controlled conditions such as Summernats or SDTC the risk is minimised. No more risk than say rock climbing, abseiling or numerous other ‘sports’ or ‘activities’.

I think there are much bigger and much more important issues for the politicians to attend to rather than banning dragways and Summernats.

How about lowering the road toll ?

People rock climbing and abseiling only put themselves in danger – they don’t kill others.

Agreed that lowering the road toll is a worthy cause but I would suggest that there are very few if any deaths from people doing burnouts. Street racing sure but burnouts unlikely (do you know what a burnout is?). Most accidents (fatal or otherwise) would be caused I would think by a general lack of skill and ability to drive a car rather than hoon behaviour. The licencing system is a joke and is somewhat to blame for the road toll but that is a whole new topic, best left for another day.

Rock climbing and abseiling can endanger other people – the rescuers that that risk their lives to help when things go wrong. Even bushwalking can have dire consequences as a Canberra woman recently found out when she went for a 3 hour walk and ended up being lost for 3 days. Fortunately there was a happy ending and she was found with no serious injury but there was a lot of resources thrown at the search and it was just good luck in the end that there wasn’t a tragic outcome.

Maybe we should ban all forms of motorsport because something might go wrong and someone might get hurt or killed. There’s a million other sports and activities that are just as or even more dangerous, the kids are going to do it regardless so why not give them a controlled environment to do it in. They might even become better drivers for it.

VicePope VicePope 9:54 pm 16 Sep 08

FabForty – I agee that there are many dumb things that many people do. Go into Civic in the early hours of Saturday/Sunday, and you can see a great of it. But this is something manageable – all I ask for is a chance to vote for someone who says that this is a form of intrinsically dangerous, wasteful and offensive silliness that a civil and thinking society does not need.

Granny Granny 9:44 pm 16 Sep 08

Well I have joined these Fists of Facebook, although I fear I do not have the car for it.

Reckon I’ll pop over and visit Ma Baker, see what she recommends for a bit of a hoonish getaway. Reckon she’s done a donut or two in her time.

Land sakes, how hard can it be?

*heh heh heh*

p1 p1 9:36 pm 16 Sep 08

People rock climbing and abseiling only put themselves in danger

People who use sharp knives to cut up food only put them selves at risk too, and probably a whole lot more then the average rock climber ’round here.

Burnouts etc might be pointless (appart from generating pleasure) and environmentally unsound, but then so is Floriade.

missalli missalli 9:00 pm 16 Sep 08

I would be interested to see what percentage of the nations road toll is actually caused by “hoons”…..

fabforty fabforty 8:41 pm 16 Sep 08

Felix the Cat said :

VicePope – while I tend to agree that burnouts and the like are stupid but if done under controlled conditions such as Summernats or SDTC the risk is minimised. No more risk than say rock climbing, abseiling or numerous other ‘sports’ or ‘activities’.

I think there are much bigger and much more important issues for the politicians to attend to rather than banning dragways and Summernats.

How about lowering the road toll ?

People rock climbing and abseiling only put themselves in danger – they don’t kill others.

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