Highway Racing Defense Attorneys
Racing is often seen as exciting, adventurous and just plain fun. It is glamorized in film, music, videogames, and has become a staple in modern popular culture. It is even a profession with some of the highest spectator numbers for sporting events. However, having the need for speed on a highway is not as fun as you may think, in the State of Florida it is a misdemeanor that comes with serious penalties. Traveling at high speeds not only endangers you as a biker but other drivers and pedestrians around you, and an accident can quickly turn the misdemeanor into a felony. If you were charged with the criminal traffic offense of racing on highways, it is of high importance to seek out an attorney that can help with your case. At 911 Biker Law, we provide motorcycle accident attorneys who can help you with your racing offense.
What is Considered Racing Under Florida Law?
Under Florida Statutes, Section 316.191, the term “Race” refers to the use of one or more motor vehicles (cars, motorcycles, etc.) in competition, arising from a challenge to demonstrate superiority of a motor vehicle or driver, and the acceptance or competitive response to that challenge, whether it is through prior arrangement or an immediate response. The vehicle is used in an attempt to outgain or outdistance another vehicle, to prevent another motor vehicle from passing, to arrive at a destination ahead of another vehicle or vehicles, or to test the physical stamina or endurance of drivers over long-distance routes.
Section 316.191 of the Florida Statutes also defines the term “Drag Race” as the operation of two or more motor vehicles starting side by side from a specific point at accelerating speeds in a competitive attempt to outdistance each other. It can also refer to the operation of one or more vehicles over a common selected course, starting at the same point and ending at the same point, for the purpose of comparing the relative speeds or power of acceleration within a certain distance or time limit.
According to Section 316.191, anyone found violating any of the following points in subsection (2) will be charged with a misdemeanor of the first degree:
- Any person driving a motor vehicle, including any motorcycle, in any race or drag race on any highway, roadway, or parking lot.
- Any person participating in, coordinating, facilitating or collecting moneys at any location for any such race.
- Any person knowingly participating in such race by riding as a passenger.
- Any person purposefully causing the movement of traffic to slow or stop for any such race.
Penalties for Highway Racing
In the State of Florida, racing on highways is a first degree misdemeanor. The appropriate penalties vary depending on the number of offenses.
- For a first time offender, the officer may immediately arrest the biker and take him/her into custody. The officer may then have the motorcycle impounded for up to 30 business days. The driver will be subject to a fine of $500 to $1,000 and their license will be suspended for one year.
- For a second offense within five years of a prior violation, the driver shall pay a fine between $1,000 and $3,000 and their license will be revoked for a period of two years. If the motorcycle belongs to them it may be seized and forfeited.
- A third offense within five years of a prior violation will result in a fine of $2,000 to $5,000. The driver license of that person may also be revoked for four years.
All offenses face possible jail time. In the State of Florida, your license will automatically be suspended regardless if adjudication is withheld. Your driving record will receive four points for any of the racing on highways violations except as a spectator; a spectator will receive three points. If at the time of racing another person received bodily injury, the charge can be filed as a felony.
Orlando Traffic Defense Lawyer
Highway racing is a serious criminal charge that can lead to heavy penalties; however, there are many ways to contest a racing charge in Florida. Crimes for racing tend to be difficult to prove at trial due to the vagueness of the Statutes; because of this it is crucial to have an attorney. An experienced attorney can greatly reduce or even help drop your charges. 911 Biker Law can provide you with a motorcycle accident lawyer Orlando, FL residents trust. Contact us today.