Sometimes, it seems like the police really should have more on their minds than writing tickets for missing a stop sign, running a red light or driving too fast through a school zone.
The police really aren’t just “ticket happy,” or looking to make a quota. They’re trying to keep the roads as safe as possible, and data compiled by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration Research shows that 90% of all crashes result from driver errors, including drowsy, distracted, intoxicated and reckless driving.
Distractions are among the leading causes of motor vehicle accidents. They take a motorist’s focus off the road and their vehicle’s operation and redirect it to something else. It’s this lack of attention that compromises their ability to process important information that may be critical to their decision making and, thus, their ability to avoid a severe crash.
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) attributes at least 65% of near-accidents to driver errors. It’s not uncommon for distracted motorists to travel outside of their lane, run a stop sign or signal at an intersection, poorly gauge their braking distance or have difficulty regulating their speed. Distractions may also cause motorists not to notice medians and drive into oncoming traffic, injuring themselves or others in the process.
An increasing number of jurisdictions, including New York, have adopted legislation in recent years to curb dangerous driving habits. Both lobbyists and lawmakers often cite studies such as these when advocating for implementing or tightening up laws prohibiting motorists from texting and driving and engaging in other reckless behaviors.
Unfortunately, it’s easy to make a simple mistake on the road, especially if you aren’t aware of legislative changes. And — to be sure — officers sometimes make a mistake when issuing tickets. A conviction for a traffic violation can remain on your record for years, increase your monthly auto insurance premium and affect your ability to retain your license or operate your vehicle, especially if you do it as part of your job. If you picked up a ticket here in Manhattan, find out how an attorney can help.
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