The State of New York recently celebrated the one year anniversary of its tough, new distracted-driving law. In recognition of the one year anniversary, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced that law enforcement officers throughout the state have issued more than 20,000 tickets to drivers for texting while driving.
All of these traffic citations were issued between July 12th of 2011 and July 12th of 2012. That’s about four times more violations than were issued during the previous year. Stricter laws and tough enforcement has been proven to help to reduce the risks of accidents caused by distracted drivers. The governor used the celebration to congratulate officers throughout the state for their efforts.
The law that was put into place by the Legislature and then signed by Cuomo last year, made it illegal for drivers to use hand-held phones or any other such devices while driving. It made violation a primary traffic offense, meaning that law enforcement officer can pull over a driver for violating only this law. In addition, the penalty for violation went from two to three points.
During the year before the law was enacted, there were less than 5,000 of these tickets issued throughout the state. Law enforcement officials and the governor point to increased enforcement as a life saver, saying it’s not about busting drivers but helping to make our streets safer.
Our New York personal injury lawyers understand the risks that accompany texting while driving. The truth of the matter is that drivers understand these risks, but they’re not willing to change their habits behind the wheel. Still, far too many drivers continue to text message behind the wheel, thereby increasing the risks of accidents for everyone. Drivers are asked to put down the phones while driving in the state in celebration of the anniversary of the law. Safe driving habits can save lives. Put down the phone and keep the distractions out of the driver’s seat.
“Using a handheld device while driving puts other motorists in danger and can lead to tragic consequences,” said Cuomo.
The increase in enforcement and tickets should be a warning to motorists. Law enforcement officers are out there and they’re looking for distracted drivers. Keep your hands on the wheel and your eyes on the road, not only to avoid a ticket, but to help to keep everyone on our roadways safe.
Drivers who text message and talk on the phone behind the wheel are four times more likely to get into a car accident. It’s a risk that no one should be willing to take. Using these devices behind the wheel gives a driver about the same abilities as a driver who is drunk. There were more than 3,000 people who were killed in distracted driving car accidents last year, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
Accident victims can call the Law Offices of Nicholas Rose, PLLC at 1-877-313-7673 for a free consultation to discuss their rights.
More Blog Entries:
Government Cash Aims to Improve Road Safety in New York, New York Injury Lawyer Blog, July 10, 2012
Teen Car Accidents a Primary Summer Threat in New York, New York Injury Lawyer Blog, June 12, 2012