Bipartisan Senate Bill Could Revive Truck Speed Limiter Rule

Two Senators have proposed a bill that would require all trucks currently outfitted with speed limiters to activate the devices with a maximum speed of 65 mph. The Department of Transportation had been scheduled to propose a rule on limiters by September 2017 but was ordered to halt the process by President Trump during his first days in office. 

Sen. Johnny Isakson (R-GA) and Sen. Chris Coon (D-DE) filed the legislation on June 27 in the Senate’s Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee. It would require all new class 7 and class 8 vehicles to be equipped with speed limiters set at 65 mph, as well as existing trucks with speed limiting capabilities to have the same cap.

The new bill does not require older trucks to be retrofitted with the technology. 

“The majority of trucks on our roads already have speed-limiting technology built-in, and the rest of the technologically advanced world has already put them to use to ensure drivers follow safe speeds,” said Isakson. “This legislation would officially enforce a long-awaited speed limit of 65 mph on large trucks and reduce the number of preventable fatalities on our busy roadways.”

The bill is supported by many highway-safety advocacy groups, including Road Safe America, Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety, Citizens for Reliable and Safe Highways (CRASH) Foundation, Parents Against Tired Truckers, the Trucking Alliance, the Truckload Carriers Association, and the Truck Safety Coalition.

According to preliminary data from the DMV, there were more than 20,000 accidents involving large trucks in New York in 2018. Almost 900 involved speeding. Unsafe speed was the third-most common factor in fatal truck accidents.

Read more: Large truck accidents in NYS data

“[T]here is no reason for an 80,000-pound tractor-trailer to operate at 70 mph or greater on our highways,” said Lane Kidd, managing director of the Trucking Alliance. 

The American Trucking Associations has long opposed mandating speed limiters in the U.S. despite their widespread usage elsewhere in the world. In 2016, CEO Chris Spear decried any such rule as “dangerous,” citing a lack of evidence to support it. He also warned about the potential for speed differentials in many parts of the country where highway speed limits are much higher than the proposed limit for large trucks.
Should the rule take effect, an often-overlooked benefit would be the reduced risk of a New York State speeding ticket for CDL drivers. Two tickets for driving 15 mph over the limit can result in a suspension of one’s commercial license. However, with a maximum possible speed of 65 mph, truckers would be unable to go more than 10 mph over the limit on highways (local roads would be another matter). Less than 2% of speeding tickets are for going less than 11 mph over the limit.

New Google Maps Features Can Help Avoid a Speeding Ticket

Google Maps as begun rolling out two new mobile app that features can help drivers avoid speeding tickets. Both iOS and Android apps will now show speed limits and warn drivers of nearby speed cameras, according to multiple reports. The features were first spotted by tipsters writing in to Android Police. Google later confirmed the rollout in a statement to Mashable.

Drivers on unfamiliar roads can easily accidentally exceed the speed limit if they fail to notice street signage. Google’s new speed limit feature can help reduce the chances of unintentionally exceeding the legal limit.

Seeing the speed limit of the road one is traveling has been a standard feature on GPS devices for years. However, until recently, the only mobile app to show them was Waze (also owned by Google). Being able to see the speed limit while following GPS directions is especially helpful for those on highways and taking long road trips. The speed limit will show at the bottom left corner of the map when the navigation feature is turned on.

Also new to Google Maps is a feature that will produce an audio alert when a user approaches a speed camera. It’s unclear how much advance notice drivers will get of upcoming speed cameras, but the warning will nonetheless provide an opportunity to reduce one’s speed and potentially avoid a ticket.

The same feature may also soon alert drivers of possible speed traps—i.e. when police hang back just out of sight waiting to catch unsuspecting speeders. Waze already has a similar feature that lets users indicate areas of police activity, including DWI checkpoints. NYPD recently sent a letter to Google demanding it remove the feature, claiming it is illegal and endangers police lives.

If you or a loved one has been ticketed for speeding in New York or New Jersey, contact an attorney to reduce or avoid the consequences. The lawyers of the Rosenblum Law Firm are skilled traffic ticket attorneys with experience handling tickets for speeding as well as other driving-related offenses. Call 888-883-5529 or email the Rosenblum Law Firm today for a free consultation about your case.

Ford Patent Could Replace Traffic Cops with Autonomous Cars

Red light cameras and speed cameras have been praised and panned for taking the human element out of traffic enforcement. Now Ford is taking this one step further with a patent for a fully autonomous police car, filed in January.

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Report: ‘Fast and Furious’ Movies Cause Increase in Speeding Tickets

New research shows that the popular The Fast and the Furious movie franchise may be encouraging motorists to speed. A New York Times report analyzed traffic violation data from Montgomery County in Maryland from 2012 to 2017. The researchers found a large increase in the average speed of drivers who received speeding tickets on the weekends after new Fast and the Furious movies were released. Continue reading “Report: ‘Fast and Furious’ Movies Cause Increase in Speeding Tickets”

Can Police Issue Speeding Tickets Outside Their Jurisdiction?

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Can Police Issue Speeding Tickets Outside Their Jurisdiction?

Orange County PD flash their lights at you just a few traffic signals away from the border of Putnam County. Do you pull over or gun it so that cops can’t chase you over county lines? It sounds tempting to try to get away, but would it work? Can police chase you and issue a speeding ticket outside their jurisdiction?

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How to Avoid Speeding This Holiday

Travel is an inevitable part of the holidays, even if it’s only local. Between loading the car with gifts, getting the kids ready, and your wife’s complex and cryptic make-up routine, it’s almost impossible to not find yourself leaving the house later than you intended. When that happens, it becomes tempting to make up for lost time using your car’s accelerator.

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Don’t Let Sun Glare Ruin Your Holiday Travel

For those who plan to travel during Thanksgiving, experts say the best time to leave is as early as possible, with 6 a.m. named as the ideal time to hit the road in NY. One of the biggest challenges to leaving so early, aside from lack of sleep, is dealing with sunrise-induced sun glare. According to the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA), sun glare is a critical factor in about 16% of motor vehicle crashes.

Continue reading “Don’t Let Sun Glare Ruin Your Holiday Travel”

How to Get a Warning Instead of a Ticket

Every day police throughout New York and New Jersey pull drivers over for speeding but don’t always issue a ticket. Officers have the ability to issue a warning to drivers rather than cite them for a violation. Under what circumstances can the officer do this? And how can you maximize your chances of getting off with just a warning?

Let’s start with the opposite: when an officer is allowed to issue a ticket? A cop must have an objective, clearly articulable violation of an ordinance or statute which prompts the traffic stop.  This is referred to as “probable cause.” There are some exceptions to this, such as an investigative stop based on reasonable suspicion of a crime. If neither of the above are the case, the stop would be considered unlawful.

That said, if you have been pulled over it is usually reasonable to assume that the officer clearly witnessed a violation. When a driver isn’t cited, it is usually because the officer exercised discretion and decided not to. Law enforcement officials have surprisingly wide latitude in discretion — they can warn or ticket for a lot of reasons, including patently superficial ones. They can also choose to issue tickets for relatively trivial offenses, or issue a warning for serious ones.

The bottom line is that there isn’t necessarily a rhyme or reason behind the decision to ticket or not ticket. Does that mean that getting off with a warning is a matter of luck? Perhaps, but there are some things you can do to increase your chances, such as:

  • Be polite. Remember that the officer is only doing his/her own job.
  • Be calm. Don’t get frustrated or angry. At the same time, don’t gush or turn on the water works (this may work sometimes for women, but only in moderation).
  • Be quiet. In other words, don’t offer any more information than you have to. Don’t admit to the infraction. If you do and the officer does issue a ticket, that admission can be used against you should you challenge to ticket in court.
  • Be cooperative. Provide the legally required information and documents in a timely manner. Also, keep the music down and your hands on the wheel. In the daytime, take off your sunglasses. At night, turn on the interior car lights.

Realize that even if you do all of the above you may still get a ticket. If you or a loved one has been ticketed for speeding or any other traffic violation in New York or New Jersey, you need expert legal counsel right away. The lawyers of the Rosenblum Law Firm are skilled traffic ticket attorneys who are experienced in handling tickets for speeding as well as other driving-related offenses. Call 888-203-2619 or email the Rosenblum Law Firm today for a free consultation about your case.

The Fastest Speeding Ticket Ever

Police cruiser setting speed trap
By Ildar Sagdejev (Specious) (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia Commons
New Yorkers speed far more often than they probably should, with 60 percent admitting that they exceed the legal limit regularly. Some speeding is worse than others, though. This leads to the obvious question: What’s the fastest speeding ticket ever written? Unfortunately (or maybe fortunately), while New Yorkers rank high in a lot of traffic-related categories, Texas is said to be the home of the fastest speeder ever caught. The driver’s name is not known, but as the legend goes, he was doing 242 mph in a Koenigsegg CC. The act took place in 2003 as part of the Gumball 3000, an annual international motor rally on public roads. Rumor has it that the ticket would have cost him $650,000 had he not managed to talk his way out of it.

There is one caveat to all this – no public record of the incident exists. The story became widespread when it was mentioned on an episode of Top Gear (Season 8, Episode 1). No witnesses or evidence have ever turned up.

Given the possible fiction-status of this entry, we submit to you a follow up: a 205-mph ticket for a motorcycle rider in Minnesota. Here at least there is an article documenting the incident. It happened in 2004 on U.S. Highway 61 in Wabasha. The rider, then-20-year-old Samuel Armstrong Tilley, was arrested and charged with reckless driving and driving without a motorcycle license.

If you are caught going over 200 mph in New York you are likely to get hit with a speeding ticket of about $600, plus a mandatory NYS surcharge of up to $93. A conviction would result in 11 points on your license, which means an automatic suspension even if you have no other convictions on your driving record. Not to mention, at such a speed, it’s also possible to be charged with reckless driving, as happened to Tilley. That’s not even getting into the impact on your auto insurance.

If you or a loved one has been caught speeding – even if it doesn’t break any records – it is advisable that you consult an attorney right away. The lawyers of the Rosenblum Law Firm are skilled New York traffic ticket attorneys with experience handling tickets for speeding as well as other driving-related offenses. Call 888-203-2619 or email the Rosenblum Law Firm today for a free consultation about your case.

 

Difference Between Yellow vs White Speed Limit Signs

What’s the Difference Between Yellow and White Speed Limit Signs?

Speed limit signs seem like the simplest thing in the world. You may have noticed, however, that some speed limit signs are yellow, while most are white. Seems like a minor thing, but there’s a difference between them that you should be aware of.

Yellow speed limit signs are also known as advisory speed limit signs. You’ll see these most often when roads curve. You might also see them on a stretch of road that is hilly or which suddenly narrows. Either way, it is a warning to drivers to reduce speed.

The limit on an advisory speed limit sign is always at least 5 mph lower than the rest of the roadway. The yellow color is intended to draw your attention so that you adjust your speed accordingly. In most cases, the advisory limit is temporary; once you have passed the stretch of road with the advisory-inducing conditions, a white sign will typically be posted indicating you can return to the old speed. However, it is possible for multiple advisory limits to appear back to back.

Can I Get a Ticket for Exceeding an Advisory Limit?

Advisory speed limits are not a legal speed limit; only the standard white speed limit signs carry the force of the law. Therefore, you cannot get a speeding ticket for disobeying an advisory speed limit sign. Yellow signs are simply a warning to drivers of a change in road conditions that may make their current speed dangerous. The number is usually based on the physics of the road, taking into account things like centrifugal force (around a bend) and angular momentum (at the top of a hill).

If an officer issues a speeding ticket, it is most likely for exceeding the official (white) speed limit. This will cost at least $150 plus a mandatory surcharge of $88-$93 and will lead to no less three points but as many as 11 points on your New York license, depending on how far above the standard limit you were going. Alternatively, there’s a chance you could get hit with a ticket for failure to reduce speed. This rarely-issued ticket penalizes drivers who do not slow down for special hazards, such as when approaching train tracks or the crest of a hill. It carries a maximum fine of $150 plus a mandatory surcharge of $88-$93 and three points on your license.

While exceeding an advisory speed is not illegal per se, it can be considered negligent. That means if you are involved in an accident while exceeding the advisory limit, you can be liable.

In addition to the fines and points, a conviction for any kind of speeding ticket can cause your auto insurance rates to skyrocket. If you or a loved one has been caught speeding, it is advisable that you consult an attorney to help you avoid the costs and points associated with a ticket. The lawyers of the Rosenblum Law Firm are skilled New York traffic ticket attorneys who are experienced in handling tickets for speeding as well as other driving-related offenses. Call 888-203-2619 or email the Rosenblum Law Firm today for a free consultation about your case.