Sideshows: San Francisco residents sound off on tires squealing, cars on fire

Residents of San Francisco sounded off about noisy sideshows that ripped through their neighborhoods over the weekend, where tires squealed and a car was set on fire. Police say as many as 200 vehicles were involved. 

"It just disrupts everything," a woman named Ada of Vallejo said on Sunday. "Besides the noise pollution, the tires, and the air, it’s just not good."

One car on the Embarcadero caught fire while drivers did stunts in the intersection about 2 a.m. Sunday. San Francisco police said a nearby building had been vandalized and when they got to the location, stunt drivers and spectators fled the scene.

"It totally blocks your traffic, and you can’t even get home," Ada said. "The police don’t respond. They say we don’t have enough manpower to pull up for the people that are there to be able to stop it."

Then, about 3 a.m., another sideshow broke out near Valencia and Cesar Chavez streets. There were no reports of injuries at either location. 

Though San Francisco police and local leaders have vowed to put an end to sideshows, some people say stunt drivers should be allowed to hold sideshows if they can do them safely.

"I don’t know if a police presence is really the right answer to it because it’s a spur-of-the-moment kind of thing but if there could be some sort of safety around the event," a woman named Gwen, who lives in the East Bay, said. 

Mackay of Cole Valley added:  "We live in a society where we’ve got to find a way to make our hobbies work with what keeps the party going."

San Francisco police said they didn't make any arrests. 

However, in a video posted to social media on Monday, SFPD Chief Bill Scott said "early Sunday morning, a convoy of criminals headed to the city from the East Bay." He said SFPD learned about the meet-up location and were standing by. Scott said the group splintered and continued their illegal sideshows. Ultimately, Scott said officers were able to gather evidence and flushed vehicles out of the area. 

Vehicles were towed. Scott said the investigations into the sideshows are far from over. He expects the vehicles involved to be impounded in the coming days and weeks. 

Scott reminded that sideshow events are "illegal" and unacceptable. 

Sideshows also popped up in Oakland at four different locations over the weekend.

At one of the events, fireworks were seen as large crowds gathered.

One video shows at least two people being hit by cars. 

Oakland police have not responded to whether there were any injuries or arrests.