A Great Big City

Mayor de Blasio Proposes State Law Changes to Target Dangerous Drivers

Mayor de Blasio
Mayor de Blasio via NYC Mayor's Office

In a press conference held today with NYPD and DOT officials, Mayor de Blasio announced new proposals for making city streets safer.

The day after a large demonstration near where two children were killed in Park Slope, the mayor outlined proposed changes to be made at the state level that would increase street safety. Since the city has to operate under state traffic laws, the proposals would have to be adopted by New York state government in Albany.

The first proposal tackles speed cameras in school zones, where the city seeks to increase the number of speed cameras in school zones and expand the definition of a school zone so that it encompases streets near the school, not just the street where the school is located. In combination with these cameras, the proposal would escalate fees for vehicles caught speeding. Currently, multiple infractions receive the same $50 fine, with no regard to repeated violations. Under the proposal, the fee would increase for repeat offenders, starting at $50 and incrementing up to $350 and a suspended vehicle registration after six violations within a 2-year period.

The vehicle involved in the deadly Park Slope crash had been ticketed in four instances of speeding in a school zone in the last two years.

Also in response to the Park Slope crash, where the driver has claimed she suffered a seizure, de Blasio outlined new proposals regarding medical conditions that could impact a person's ability to safely drive. The proposed state law would require medical professionals to notify the DMV of "medical conditions or incidents that may cause a driver to suddenly lose consciousness". There were no further details about the actions the DMV would take once notified, but indicated it would be modeled on New Jersey's process of identifying medically high-risk drivers.

You can read more about the school speed cameras at the NY State Senate site.

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