Car accident
Zero tolerance for illegal motor vehicle racing in road traffic
Time and again, races lead to serious accidents. Sometimes they even end fatally. To combat illegal motor vehicle racing, the NRW police rely on consistent intervention, exhausting all legal possibilities.

The suffering inflicted on the victims of illegal motor vehicle racing, their families and friends can hardly be measured. Legislators therefore tightened the penalties in 2017. The newly created Section 315d of the German Criminal Code (StGB) makes participation in a prohibited motor vehicle race a criminal offense. The penalty can be up to two years in prison. If people are seriously injured or even fatally injured as a result, they could face up to ten years in prison.

In addition, motor vehicles can be confiscated for expropriation in accordance with Section 315f of the Criminal Code, even if they do not belong to the driver. Driving licenses are also regularly withdrawn after races.

The NRW police initiate criminal proceedings as soon as there is an initial suspicion of participation in prohibited races in road traffic. The zero-tolerance strategy of the NRW police applies here. People who endanger the lives of bystanders by speeding are consistently prosecuted by the police to the full extent of the law. Since the introduction of the criminal offense § 315d StGB in 2017, the number of violations recorded by the police in North Rhine-Westphalia has risen by 56% to date. In connection with prohibited motor vehicle racing, the NRW police investigated 766 cases in 2019.


Judgement "Fleeing from police can constitute racing" in Stuttgart

The Higher Regional Court of Stuttgart has ruled for the first time that cases of so-called "fleeing from police" can also fall under the new criminal offence of "prohibited motor vehicle racing", which has been in force since October 13, 2017. The defendant was sentenced by Münsingen District Court on October 2, 2018 to a fine of 70 daily rates of 40 euros each for a prohibited motor vehicle race. His driving license was revoked and his driving license was confiscated. In addition, he was given a nine-month ban on obtaining a new driving license. The defendant has lodged a so-called "leap-frog appeal" against this to the Higher Regional Court. The appeal was unsuccessful before the Higher Regional Court of Stuttgart.


Ruling on "speeding case" in Cologne

A race between two men in the center of Cologne led to a tragic accident in 2015 in which a 19-year-old student was killed. In a decision on March 22, 2018, the Cologne Regional Court sentenced the two speeders to prison for involuntary manslaughter for two and one year and nine months respectively.


"Speeding case" verdict in Braunschweig

The Braunschweig Regional Court announced that the conviction of the defendant, who killed an innocent man during a car chase in Braunschweig in August 2019, has become final following the withdrawal of the appeal originally lodged by him.

The district court had sentenced the 37-year-old defendant, who had fled from the police at 250 km/h on the A2 and A39 highways before being killed on the Salzdumer on 20 August 2019. August 2019 on Salzdahlumer Straße in Braunschweig, was sentenced to seven years' imprisonment for illegal motor vehicle racing resulting in death in accordance with Section 315d (1) No. 3, (5) of the German Criminal Code, for negligent bodily harm and for illegal possession of narcotics in not small quantities and illegal possession of doping substances, and at the same time ordered a five-year ban on driving.


Focus checks by the police

In focus checks, the police repeatedly identify violations of technical regulations and rules of conduct that impair road safety. These violations are consistently reported and prosecuted. It may be necessary to seize vehicles and notify other authorities such as the licensing authority.


Video spots with well-known "YouTubers"

Together with the city of Cologne, the Cologne police have launched the "Zero tolerance for speeders" campaign. Posters have been placed throughout the city of Cologne. The posters are intended to discourage young people from speeding and racing. Video spots with well-known YouTubers were also produced under the slogan "I'm cool!

The videos and further information on the Cologne police campaign can be found here.


§ 315d StGB Prohibited motor vehicle racing

(1) Whoever in road traffic
1. organizes or carries out an unauthorized motor vehicle race,
2. participates as a motor vehicle driver in an unauthorized motor vehicle race or
3. moves as a motor vehicle driver at an inappropriate speed and in a grossly unlawful and reckless manner in order to achieve the highest possible speed,
is liable to a custodial sentence not exceeding two years or to a monetary penalty.

(2) Anyone who endangers the life or limb of another person or property of significant value in the cases of subsection 1 numbers 2 or 3 shall be liable to a custodial sentence not exceeding five years or to a monetary penalty.

(3) In the cases of subsection 1 number 1, the attempt is punishable.

(4) Anyone who negligently causes the danger in the cases of subsection 2 shall be liable to a custodial sentence not exceeding three years or to a monetary penalty.

(5) If the offender causes the death or serious damage to the health of another person or damage to the health of a large number of people through the offense in the cases of paragraph 2, the penalty shall be imprisonment from one year to ten years, in less serious cases imprisonment from six months to five years.

"Crash Kurs NRW" is a traffic accident prevention program for young adults in which the NRW police, among others, support educational institutions as part of their mobility education. The program is aimed specifically at young people in the 10th and 11th grades as well as vocational school students.
On Good Friday and on Saturday night, the police are repeatedly deployed against speeders and tuners who endanger road traffic and disrupt public order.
Translated with (API Version)
In urgent cases: Police emergency number 110