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NY pols push speed cameras to crack down on illegal drag racing

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Noisy, dangerous, illegal street racing has surged in New York City during the pandemic — and a group of state pols are trying to slam on the brakes with tougher laws.

“While there’s been less traffic and new patterns during the pandemic, some drivers have used this as an opportunity to treat our streets like a NASCAR speedway,” said state Sen. Brad Hoylman on Thursday.

He is co-sponsoring a bill backed by Mayor Bill de Blasio to turn on city speed cameras 24/7. State law currently requires school zone speed cameras to shut down from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. — neglecting some of the most deadly times and locations.

Another bill would set a 95 decibel limit for motorcycle exhaust and 60 decibel limit for car mufflers, while also increasing the maximum fine for loud exhaust from $125 to $1,000.

The city received 191 complaints about illegal street racing in March 2021, compared to just 13 complaints in 13 March 2019, according to city data.

The year from April 1, 2020 to March 31, 2021, meanwhile, saw drag racing complaints more than quintuple from 429 to 2,344, Hoylman said.

His office provided several community members’ videos of searing, loud dirt bikes and cars with booming mufflers speeding along streets, or doing illegal road maneuvers like donuts.

“It really feels that as New Yorkers, we’re under siege,” he said during a press conference in Inwood with state Sens. Robert Jackson and Andrew Gounardes.

“Racing and the noise it causes is not just a severe nuisance, which it is, it can be deadly.”

Legislators have dubbed the two bills the FURIOUS and SLEEP Acts.

“I had veterans calling me, saying, ‘I have PTSD. I’m suffering here,’” said Tanya Bonner of Manhattan Community Board 12, who leads the Washington Heights and Inwood Noise Task Force.

“We know what the problems are, and it’s time to do something about it.”

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