Lakeside's boy racer woes may have been made worse by death of Fast and the Furious star

Thurrock Gazette: Paul Walker, who starred in the Fast and the Furious films, died in a car crash in November Paul Walker, who starred in the Fast and the Furious films, died in a car crash in November

PROBLEMS with boy racers at Lakeside might have been worse this winter than in previous years as cruisers flocked to the area to pay homage to Paul Walker, it was claimed.

The Fast and the Furious actor died in a car crash in LA in November.

Leigh Norris, the West Thurrock neighbourhood inspector made the comments while explaining to Chafford Hundred residents what police have done and what they plan to do to clamp down on cruisers in the Lakeside basin.

Problems with cruiser meets – which often digress into races around the Lakeside basin – tend to peter out in the winter. But residents claim they have been blighted by noise in recent months.

Walker had featured in the films, which are based on the street racing and car modification scene in America. Insp. Norris said one recent meet at Thurrock services was arranged in memory of the 40-year-old.

He told the meeting: “Part of me – and some of my staff – think that some activity may have continued over the winter, possibly because of the death of Paul Walker. He died in a high speed collision. That’s just a theory. It could also be partly down to the dispersal order not being continued through winter.”

His comments came at a fiery meeting, chaired by the Essex Police and Crime Commissioner Nick Alston, which focussed on crime in Chafford Hundred.

A document handed around at the meeting said, to tackle cruisers, police intend to:

*introduce a new dispersal order in April 2014

*install CCTV cameras covering the roads in the Lakeside basin

*put road calming measures in place on the A126 and B186 (West Thurrock Way)

*begin using new speed guns

*increase patrols at key times Insp. Norris explained work the police have already done to clamp down on wreckless racers haring around the roads at Lakeside.

But residents claimed the problem, which has been going on for 20 years, is getting worse.

One man, a Chafford Hundred resident, said: “While I was out last weekend, I came up the slip road to the A126 roundabout and saw loads of cars all parked up on the A126 bridge.

“A Vauxhall Corsa was going the wrong way around the roundabout and coming straight towards us. It's unbelievable.”

He said cruisers were doing that in a bid to beat a new barrier at the Dumb-bell roundabout aimed at discouraging drivers from racing up and down the A126.

Other residents argued that they do not know who to complain to about the problem. One said: “Is it going to take a fatality for something to be done?”

Insp. Norris said he wanted to make the area unattractive to cruisers. He said that Thurrock Council were in discussion with developers behind the plans for 350 new homes and a Morrison supermarket on the old Mecca bingo site to make changes to West Thurrock Way.

Thurrock Gazette: Racetrack – boy racers at Lakeside captured on YouTube videos

Racers around Lakeside

He added that a lot of work had already been done with businesses on the retail parks.

Angie Gaywood, the council’s portfolio holder for public protection added that McDonald’s also need to take more responsibility. The 24-hour fast food outlet is a magnet for cruisers.

She said: “McDonald’s have been very slow coming to the table. But they’re here now and we’re in talks with them. They realise there as much a cause of the problem as they are a solution to it.”

Comments (5)

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11:21am Sat 8 Mar 14

Rob-C100 says...

I really do think that Essex Police have totally lost the plot........
I really do think that Essex Police have totally lost the plot........ Rob-C100
  • Score: 0

11:45pm Sat 8 Mar 14

Steve r.m.c.c says...

It's just a easy way for Essex police to look like they are doing some work how many homes have been broken into in the last six months.bit hard to catch a robber lets go for the rasy targets.i fully understand it gets out of hand with the little boy racers but as car enthusiast myself that don't race and take pride in my car do like to go to the retail parks to meet up with like mined people.last year the club I'm with asked Essex police if they could help with a meet and come along to teach people the down side of racing along with Essex fire department .as a result of asking for help with this we was told the car parks will be closed off and anyone seen there will be asked to leave.i spend a lot of time and money on my car as I don't do drugs or go drinking and fighting at weekends if the police help out it mite make them look better as they are there anyway so why not just join in and help real car enthusiasts push the racers out and enjoy the car parks that don't get used at night.
It's just a easy way for Essex police to look like they are doing some work how many homes have been broken into in the last six months.bit hard to catch a robber lets go for the rasy targets.i fully understand it gets out of hand with the little boy racers but as car enthusiast myself that don't race and take pride in my car do like to go to the retail parks to meet up with like mined people.last year the club I'm with asked Essex police if they could help with a meet and come along to teach people the down side of racing along with Essex fire department .as a result of asking for help with this we was told the car parks will be closed off and anyone seen there will be asked to leave.i spend a lot of time and money on my car as I don't do drugs or go drinking and fighting at weekends if the police help out it mite make them look better as they are there anyway so why not just join in and help real car enthusiasts push the racers out and enjoy the car parks that don't get used at night. Steve r.m.c.c
  • Score: 4

5:09pm Mon 10 Mar 14

give_me_strength says...

You only have to have a pair of ears to listen to these young chaps racing their cars around Thurrock at the weekend. Unfortunately the police are likely waiting until someone gets killed before they put a stop to the circuit...
You only have to have a pair of ears to listen to these young chaps racing their cars around Thurrock at the weekend. Unfortunately the police are likely waiting until someone gets killed before they put a stop to the circuit... give_me_strength
  • Score: 0

12:17pm Tue 11 Mar 14

AnonymousJane says...

Knew it. As much as I do have respect for Paul Walker. Boy RACERS need to STOP. It's intimidating going to Tescos at night and seeing half the carpark, which is cut off BOMBARDED WITH YOUNG BOY RACERS. Who blare their music out and act like animals. Especially when the police are not round...Someone needs to put a stop to them all...Especially their driving is disgusting...I don't want my new MERC hit by a spotty teenager who just past his test?
Knew it. As much as I do have respect for Paul Walker. Boy RACERS need to STOP. It's intimidating going to Tescos at night and seeing half the carpark, which is cut off BOMBARDED WITH YOUNG BOY RACERS. Who blare their music out and act like animals. Especially when the police are not round...Someone needs to put a stop to them all...Especially their driving is disgusting...I don't want my new MERC hit by a spotty teenager who just past his test? AnonymousJane
  • Score: -4

5:25pm Thu 13 Mar 14

Steve r.m.c.c says...

The passing of Paul walker is just drop out.the reason for people going to lakeside more is because the dispersal order was lifted and its a big place for everyone to get together other than playing cat and mouse all over Essex being chased away after a hour of being somewhere by the police.we held a meet for the passing of Paul walker and within 6 hours had over 3k people attending it got so lager we had to find somewhere and quick.being let down by the Nec Birmingham Santa pod stepped up and we raised 28 thousand pounds for reach out worldwide.how many do gooders (internet warriors) sit at home moaning about what goes on at these meets can say they try to make money for those in need.we do London air ambulance cancer resurch and other do help for Hero's g.o.c.h and many others all year around.
The passing of Paul walker is just drop out.the reason for people going to lakeside more is because the dispersal order was lifted and its a big place for everyone to get together other than playing cat and mouse all over Essex being chased away after a hour of being somewhere by the police.we held a meet for the passing of Paul walker and within 6 hours had over 3k people attending it got so lager we had to find somewhere and quick.being let down by the Nec Birmingham Santa pod stepped up and we raised 28 thousand pounds for reach out worldwide.how many do gooders (internet warriors) sit at home moaning about what goes on at these meets can say they try to make money for those in need.we do London air ambulance cancer resurch and other do help for Hero's g.o.c.h and many others all year around. Steve r.m.c.c
  • Score: 0

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