In Florida, street racing occurs when the driver competitively drives a vehicle in a speeding contest. Florida Statute 316.191 outlines the four aspects of racing in Florida:
- Speed or acceleration contest – driving any vehicle (including motorcycles) in any race, speed competition, speed contest, drag race, acceleration contest, speed exhibition, acceleration exhibition, or speed record;
- Coordination and Facilitation– participating in, coordinating, facilitating, or collecting moneys at any location for any race, competition, contest, test, or exhibition;
- Passenger Participation– knowingly riding as a passenger in a race, competition, contest, test, or exhibition; and
- Traffic Interference– purposefully causing the movement of traffic to slow or stop for any race, competition, contest, test, or exhibition.
The statute also defines “drag racing” as the operation of two or more vehicles that race side by side at accelerating speeds in a competitive attempt to outdistance each other.
Penalties for Racing on the Highway
Racing on the highway is a first-degree misdemeanor, punishable by:
- A fine of not less than $500 or more than $1,000
- Driver’s license revoked for 1 year
A second offense within 5 years of the first defense is a first-degree misdemeanor, punishable by:
- A fine of not less than $1,000 or more than $3,000
- Driver’s license revoked for 2 years
A third offense within 5 years is a first-degree misdemeanor, punishable by:
- A fine of not less than $2,000 or more than $5,000
- Driver’s license revoked for 4 years
The arresting officer can also impound the vehicle used in the racing for 30 days. Any motor vehicle used in street racing by any person within five years after a prior conviction of street racing may be seized and forfeited as provided by the Florida Contraband Forfeiture Act.
As stated in the statute, “conviction” means a determination of guilt that is the result of a plea or trial, regardless of whether adjudication is withheld.
If you are cited or arrested for street racing in Florida, contact experienced traffic attorney Brandon Gans today for a free consultation.