New York Safety and Traffic Laws

Driving Safely: New York Traffic Laws

The freedom of being able to drive is a privilege, and the ability to continue exercising that privilege requires following the rules and laws set out to make our roads and highways a safe place to be. When driving in New York, make sure you’re aware of the state New York traffic laws to follow at all times. Being the safer and more responsible on the driver could be the difference between a happy day on the roads and an expensive ticket, or worse.

The Consequences of Drinking and Driving

New York has a zero-tolerance policy against driving under the influence of alcohol. And now with the enactment of Leandra’s Law in 2009, penalties are even harsher for those caught driving under the influence with a child under 16 years of age. Your first violation will cost you $300-500 and/or 15 days in jail; the consequences under Leandra’s Law will land you in jail for up to 4 years, with an automatic license suspension and the installation of an interlock device upon your vehicle. If you injure or kill a child because of drunk driving, expect to spend 25 years behind bars. Drinking and driving is a life or death matter, one which the New York laws do not take lightly.

Driving Without a License, Registration, and Insurance

You must have a valid driver’s license with you at all times when traveling through New York state. If you fail to produce a driver’s license when asked, or your license is expired, you will receive a fine between $75 and $300, and/or imprisonment for up to 15 days (or both, if you have multiple violations).

If you similarly fail to produce your registration and proof of insurance, you’ll be ticketed. You can appear at court on the specified date to produce the missing documents; if you’re unable to do so, you’ll be held responsible for the $30 fine on the citation.

Don’t Hit and Run!

If you are involved in any sort of collision, whether it’s with another car, a piece of property, or the worst case scenario a person you must stop and report the incident to the police. Information to provide includes your name, address, driver’s license and registration, and insurance. A violation of these actions when property damage happens incurs a penalty of up to $250; if an injury has occurred, it constitutes a Class B misdemeanor and incurs a penalty of $250-$500.

If you actually leave the scene of the accident, you will be assessed a Class A misdemeanor, which carries a fine of $500-$1000 and any other appropriate penalties provided by law. It is imperative that you remain at the scene to answer questions and provide all information required of you.

Watch Your U-Turns

According to the New York Vehicular and Traffic Code, “No motor vehicle shall make a U turn upon any curve, or upon the approach to, or near the crest of a grade, where such motor vehicle cannot be seen by the driver of any other motor vehicle approaching from either direction within five hundred feet.”

As always, you should exercise good judgment and responsibility anytime you’re on the roads. These New York highway traffic laws are designed to keep you and your fellow motorists safe every time you’re behind the wheel, and it’s imperative that you follow them each day.

More Articles & News
Register Now