RCMP have more than $2 million worth of luxury vehicles in their possession after busting more than a dozen young drivers many from Richmond for speeding and dangerous driving Wednesday.
A convoy of expensive cars, including a Ferrari, Maseratis, Lamborghinis, Mercedes, and an Aston Martin, were racing through the Massey Tunnel on Highway 99 at speeds up to 200 km/hour Wednesday afternoon.
At about 3:30 p.m., Deas Island Freeway Patrol received multiple reports of the impromptu street race involving 13 vehicles the most police have ever seen street racing at one time.
The convoy included one Ferrari 599, three Lamborghini Gallardos, two Maserati Turismos, two Mercedes SLs, three Nissan GTRs, one Audi and one Aston Marton.
Witnesses reported that the group tried to clear normal highway traffic to create a raceway: Two vehicles would travel slowly side by side blocking the lanes in order to clear the lanes ahead so the other drivers could race ahead of them.
When the drivers exited the freeway at King George, Surrey RCMP officers moved in to stop six of the drivers near 152nd St. They were not racing at the time and were pulled over without incident.
The other seven were stopped shortly after by White Rock RCMP.
The Mounties impounded the vehicles for seven days and charged each driver with driving without due consideration, and fined each of them $196.
"Complaints started coming in from the tunnel," said Supt. Norm Gaumont, RCMP officer in charge of traffic enforcement for the Lower Mainland. The 13 were caught after the fact, in Surrey and White Rock.
"From what we can gather, they were going for a meal and this was I guess a way for them to have some fun. What's really disturbing is this happened at peak time, traffic time."
Gaumont said their penalty would have been much stiffer had they been caught on video, radar, or if a police officer had seen them racing.
"I know there's a lot of disappointment, wondering why we only charged them with an offence of $196. They fact of the matter is, we have to look at all the evidence we have and what we're able to prove," he said. "That's why we've charged them with driving without due consideration for the public."
Gaumont noted that only one of the cars was driven by its registered owner. Six of the drivers were new drivers and one of the 13 had no license.
One of the White Rock officers noted that none of the drivers in the seven cars they stopped was over the age of 22. One of the cars had fewer than 200 km on it, indicating the drivers were mostly young and inexperienced.
My understanding is that there was no one over the age of 22, Marks said.
Six of the drivers had only their N, or new-driver class licence. One of the drivers was a female, who had a previous charge related to street racing, as did several of the other drivers.
Supt. Norm Gaumont, head of the RCMPs regional traffic services said police would ask that the drivers licences be reviewed with an eye to suspension.
He said the race was unique not only for its size, but because, its very unusual to see street racing at that time of day when the roads are very busy and its very dangerous. You usually see it at two or three in the morning.
We were lucky that no one was hurt.
Police are asking anyone who witnessed the dangerous daylight street race to call their local police.