Car cruisers have been told to keep out of West Thurrock after an order that bans events from taking place on the roads of West Thurrock was extended.
A Public Space Protection Order (PSPO), which has successfully put a stop to nuisance car cruising events since 2015, has been extended for a further 3 years.
The order is another example of the successful partnership between Thurrock Council and Essex Police, working together to tackle all forms of anti-social behaviour.
In October, residents were asked to back plans to extend the previous PSPO, which was set to expire earlier this month. Figures from the consultation showed that 80% of respondents had seen a reduction in vehicle-related anti-social behaviour since the initial order started in December 2015, and 94% agreed there was still a need for a PSPO in the area.
Under the extended PSPO – which takes effect immediately – vehicles, drivers, passengers or spectators will be prevented from taking part in any car cruising events in West Thurrock for 3 more years.
Cllr Shane Hebb, Deputy Leader of Thurrock Council, said: "We know that these car cruising events have been a real nuisance to residents living in West Thurrock, and we are also aware that the PSPO has been a real success in cracking down on them, so I'm pleased that residents have backed our plans to extend the PSPO on car cruising events in West Thurrock.
"Statistics have shown that these kinds of protection orders have had a hugely positive impact in preventing this type of anti-social behaviour and helping to protect roads within the borough. We will continue to work with residents and our partners in Essex Police in finding innovative ways to make the borough safer and prevent these dangerous events."
Inspector Paul Ballard, local policing and partnership inspector for Grays, said: "There has been a significant reduction in car cruising in the area since the public space protection order was put in place.
"There are some areas where we still see some issues, but we continue to actively tackle those, and overall we have seen fewer problems as a result of the order.
"We have no issue with genuine car enthusiasts who want to gather in appropriate places to enjoy their hobby and socialise.
"But dangerous and reckless driving is a real risk to public safety. The noise and anti-social behaviour associated with illegal street racing also has a detrimental effect on the quality of life for residents.
"We'll continue our work with Thurrock Council, landowners and retailers to address any issues. And we will continue to take robust action against anyone who breaches the order and commits any offences."
For more information on the West Thurrock PSPO, go to thurrock.gov.uk/pspo