1 November 2012 - Modified cars racing through east London's tunnels are endangering motorists and making life a misery for residents, says Poplar and Limehouse MP Jim Fitzpatrick. The Labour MP said up to 400 cars are congregating in Dartford and Essex and racing along a route which covers the Blackwall Tunnel and the Limehouse Link. Mr Fitzpatrick, who has written to Tower Hamlets Police and the council demanding action on the organised events, also said the cars are using the tunnels at Westferry Circus to regroup and film stunts. He pointed out a YouTube video from October 20 which saw an estimated 265 Japanese fast cars gather in the roads under the Canary Wharf estate.
Mr Fitzpatrick said: "These cars use the tunnels and the route for no other purpose than to showcase the sound and speed of their cars. Videos posted online show dangerous and loud street car racing which belongs in a Hollywood movie and not the streets of east London. "As well as causing a disturbance to residents the fast cars endanger motorists on the road. We need these tunnels runs off the road which means a dispersal zone and barriers on race nights." The MP, who has received numerous complaints from constituents, said a Twitter message following the October 20 meet said: "@MissBanzai Well, another #TunnelRun draws to a close.
3hrs from Start to Finish for most, 10 Tunnels, 265 Jap Motors woke up #London, one more time." In late 2006, complaints by Islington London Borough Council led to contact from the police. This was caused by Tunnel Runners who had developed a predilection for the underpasses under the Barbican Estate. The reason for this was due to the fact they are wide and spacious meaning multiple cars can be in the tunnels at once. The complaint centered on the problem that they are above ground and act as underpasses for a 2000-apartment central London housing estate, meaning the noise would reverberate through the apartment block.
This combined with the time of the runs caused some tenants to complain The council named the problem group as the "London Tunnellers", in doing so, they described them as a "clandestine group of sports car enthusiasts" and stated that they were "quite notorious in certain circles" due to their choice of location and activity. The Police when commenting on the matter stated that "It seems the idea is to make as much noise as possible, using high-powered sports cars. But there have been no allegations of speeding or dangerous driving.".