Repeat Impaired Drivers, Reckless Offenders Prohibited from Driving under Governor’s Regulations

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that 8,132 dangerous drivers have been kept off the road during the last three years as result of tough regulations implemented by the Governor in 2012. The measures deny licenses to repeat offenders that continually drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs, or persistently drive recklessly.

“Impaired and irresponsible driving far too often results in needless tragedy and ramifications that can last a lifetime,” Governor Cuomo said. “These tough regulations have taken chronically dangerous drivers off the roads and helped make this a safer state.”

Since the measures went into effect three years ago, the Department of Motor Vehicles has permanently denied licenses to:

· 1,792 people for accumulating five or more alcohol or drug-related driving convictions in their lifetime.
· 2,515 people for having three or four alcohol or drug-related driving convictions in the last 25 years, plus at least one other serious driving offense during that period. A serious driving offense includes a fatal crash; a driving related penal law conviction; and an accumulation of 20 or more points worth of driving violations within the last 25 years, or having two or more driving convictions worth five points or higher.

In addition, DMV has denied licenses to:

· 3,825 drivers for an additional five years after revocation due to three or four alcohol or drug-related convictions but no serious driving offense in the last 25 years. Once reinstated after that five-year period, these individuals will receive a problem driver A-2 restricted license. This type of license is limited to driving to or from work or medical visits, among certain other limitations, and most often requires drivers to use an ignition interlock on their vehicle for five years.

These statistics were as of Friday, September 25, the three-year anniversary of the implementation of these regulations.

DMV Executive Deputy Commissioner Terri Egan said, “Governor Cuomo’s commitment to protecting New York drivers through education and enforcement has resulted in an all-time high in seat belt use, thousands of drivers being permanently kept off the road, and an acute awareness among drivers that dangerous actions can and will lead to serious consequences. DMV’s number one priority is to keep drivers and their families safe on our roadways and these aggressive DWI regulations are helping us do just that.”

In addition to day-to-day enforcement actions conducted throughout the state by law enforcement entities, the Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee coordinates targeted enforcement actions to combat impaired driving, including the Labor Day “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign. Over the course of this nearly three-week campaign, New York State Police arrested 769 individuals for driving while intoxicated. During this crackdown, State Police and local law enforcement agencies targeted not only drunk or impaired motorists, but also drivers who were speeding, not wearing seatbelts, not abiding by the “move over” law and texting while driving.

Additionally, Governor Cuomo has made combating texting-while-driving a high priority, increasing the number of points for a texting-while-driving infraction from two points to three points in 2011, and from three points to five points in 2015. Thus far in 2015, state and local law enforcement agencies have issued 58,408 tickets for texting while driving across New York and 232,637 tickets since the original texting while driving law went into effect in November 2009.

State and local law enforcement agencies have also issued 96,366 tickets for cell phone use while driving in 2015 and 3,213,900 since the law took effect in 2001.