NEW YORK — New York City drivers who get five camera-issued red light tickets or 15 camera-issued speeding tickets in a 12-month period will have to take a traffic safety course or risk losing their vehicles under a bill signed by Mayor Bill de Blasio.
The law signed Wednesday will take effect on Feb. 26, 2021 and will apply to tickets incurred after Oct. 26, 2020.
“So for a long, long time our society worshiped at the altar of the automobile and worshiped the false idol and it led us down a very dangerous road, a road of acceptance that we never ever should have followed,” de Blasio said. “But I think people are waking up really, really fast.”
The vehicles of drivers who exceed the ticket limit may be impounded unless the drivers take a safe driving course overseen by the city. Officials estimate that the new law will affect about 3,000 to 6,000 vehicles.
“Here is what this legislation today means to me. If you’re a driver and you put your fellow New Yorkers in danger, we’re getting you the h–l off the road,” de blasio said. “We are taking your vehicle. Period. That’s what this means.”
The Department of Transportation is installing 60 speed cameras a month throughout the city, DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg said.
“We think that is going to have a powerful effect on people’s behavior,” Trottenberg said. “And if they start to rack up a lot of those violations, then we will be working with the sheriff to make sure they get the education they need.”