Birmingham & Black Country

'Car cruising' ban in Black Country

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Media captionPeople taking part, organising or promoting car cruising events will be arrested under a three-year injunction.

A judge has banned so-called car cruising events across the Black Country.

Four councils - Wolverhampton, Walsall, Dudley and Sandwell and West Midlands Police - wanted to ban the events, where drivers race or show off their vehicles on public roads.

People taking part, organising or promoting them will now be arrested under a three-year injunction.

A judge at Birmingham High Court said it was a "proper measure".

The court heard more than 100 statements had been taken from police and members of the public witnessing large gatherings of people and cars along the Black Country route, which cuts through parts of the combined local authority areas.

The authorities submitted a joint application to avoid the problem of drivers relocating to another nearby area.

Wolverhampton City Council said they take place on a regular basis at a number of "hotspots" along the route, including in Bilston and Birmingham New Road on the border of Wolverhampton and Dudley.

The meetings can attract up to 250 vehicles and hundreds of spectators.

But District Judge Gailey refused to include spectators as part of the injunctions, despite an attempt by the authorities.

He said he was reluctant to grant an order "so wide in terms it's going to cause problems later on".

He also questioned the role of police responding to the events and if there was an "element of convenience" to having an injunction in place.

'Pleased with result'

But Jospeh Giret QC, representing the councils and police, said officers had been working hard to stop racing and to limit the dangers associated with it, as 31 accidents had occurred at events.

He said arrests had been made, barriers constructed and cars seized.

'Police are dealing with measured resources. They cannot do everything," he said.

Granting the injunction, Judge Gailey said there was a "real problem" of car cruising in the area and an injunction would be the "proper measure".

The injunction prohibits two or more vehicles gathering in the combined local authority area "known generally as the Black Country" between 15:00 and 07:00 GMT.

A spokesman for Wolverhampton City Council, which led the challenge, said the authorities were satisfied with the result.

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