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Police work to stop drag racers in Overland Park

Posted: 4:45 PM, Nov 03, 2017
Updated: 2017-11-03 18:50:29-04

OVERLAND PARK, Kan. — It’s a problem that Overland Park police have been trying to curb. 

In the last few months, they’ve gained traction, but officers said the finish line is still far-fetched. 

"I would probably have one of my kid’s dial 911," said Dena Tull, an Overland Park resident. 

Tull hasn’t seen it first-hand but said she can hear it from her home. 

"I occasionally hear revving of engines," said Tull. 

Many other Overland Park residents also notice the sound. 

"We were getting calls almost every day, almost every evening," said Officer John Lacy with the Overland Park Police Department. 

Over the summer, police received hundreds of calls about drag racing and reckless driving. 

"The kids are looking for a thrill," said Lacy. 

Drivers feeling invincible sparked an initiative by police to get racers to pump the brakes. Overland Park police said officers spent more than 200 hours on roads drivers decided to turn into racetracks. 

Lacy said 143rd Street from Metcalf Road to Pflumm Road and 135th Street from Metcalf Road to Pflumm Road are the main areas where drag racing occurs. 

Cracking down on drivers, officers gave out a number of tickets, some even costing upwards of $200. 

"We were constantly hearing sirens," said Tull. 

While the problem isn’t as prevalent this time of year, Tull said she's concerned about her son who will soon be getting his learners permit next summer.  

"I'm already thinking of ways like, what type of parental controls, how can we monitor how fast he's going, how can we monitor who's in the car, things like that," said Tull. 

Tull said before her son gets behind the wheel, he’s taking a back seat to her driving and those around. 

"I feel like that's probably one of the best ways for them to learn what's right and make good choices in the future," said Tull. 

Overland Park police said when the weather gets cold and kids are in school, drag racing seems to slow down. They expect it to pick up again in the spring and said officers will continue patrolling all year-round.