DES MOINES, Iowa — East 14th Street is not a speedway, but two drivers created a trail of destruction when they treated it like one this weekend. Police say they aren’t the only ones causing chaos on Des Moines’ streets.
“The speeds are extremely excessive,” said Sgt. Paul Parizek of the Des Moines Police Department. “It’s frightening for the people who live in these areas, it’s frightening for anyone else who’s on the street with them, and it’s very concerning to us.”
Sunday’s crash on East 14th south of Guthrie Avenue left two homes inhabitable and destroyed three pickup trucks on a used car lot. Police have not arrested or identified the drivers of the cars.
“When you look at street racers, not only are they dangerous, they’re selfish,” Parizek said. “They’re not thinking about what’s going to happen if they do collide with a person.”
While no one was hurt in the East 14th Street crash, Parizek said deadly crashes in Des Moines have doubled compared to this point last year.
He said the police department only has twelve officers in its traffic unit, which makes enforcement difficult in the city.
“What we find now is that we spend our nights chasing around groups of hundreds of cars, whether it’s on the East Side, in the Loop, or at other locations,” Parizek said.
He said its up to the community itself to hold reckless drivers accountable before they cause any more serious crashes.
“Take a second and think: What if I don’t walk away from this?” Parizek said. “What if the person I run into in that intersection is my mom, dad, or someone else I care about?”