Cairns car enthusiasts just cruising not hooning
A ROAD safety research organisation has agreed to delete a section in an official fact sheet that associates "cruising" with hooning after strong objections from a Far Northern car club.
The NQ Performance Ford Club demanded that the Centre for Accident Research and Road Safety Queensland (CARRS-Q) amend the fact sheet, which club president Neil Newcombe said discriminated against a group of motoring enthusiasts going on a drive.
After being contacted by The Cairns Post, CARRS-Q agreed to remove references to cruising in the four-page sheet, which said: "Cruising, where groups of vehicles slowly drive around an area to exhibit their vehicles is a behaviour that can be associated with hooning.
"While cruising, in and of itself, is not a hooning behaviour per se, it is a behaviour sometimes engaged in by those drivers who engage in the hooning behaviours described (illegal street racing, doughnuts, drifting, burn-outs and speed trials).
"However, many drivers who engage in cruising behaviour do not engage in the hooning behaviours."
Senior research officer David Soole said to avoid any potential misinterpretation by the public and car enthusiast groups the references to cruising in the State of The Road fact sheet on hooning would be removed.
"The aim of CARRS-Q's research in this area is to explore the factors and behaviours associated with hooning in order to identify ways to improve road safety," he said.
"CARRS-Q does not claim that all individuals who engage in cruising are hoons, and indeed this was explicitly stated in the fact sheet.
"Nor has it ever been the intention of CARRS-Q to present the information for the purpose of influencing anti-hooning legislation to include cruising behaviours."
Mr Newcombe said he was pleased with the decision.
However, he said the club would continue to monitor all information from CARRS-Q in relation to hooning to ensure that car clubs were not impacted.
Mr Newcombe said cruising was not hooning.
"This brands us as hoons, which we are not, " he said.
"We don't want to be tarred with the same brush as hoons."
Mr Newcombe said the club "came down heavy" on any members who drove irresponsibly and as far as he was aware no members had ever been charged with hooning offences.
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Safe drivers: The NQ Performance Ford Club president Neil Newcombe says cruising is not hooning. Picture: ANNA ROGERS