Most of us are guilty of speeding now and then, but some drivers seem to spend their lives in the passing lane. Newly proposed legislation in New York aims to curb chronic speeders with a device that limits their vehicle’s speed. A whopping 30 percent of traffic fatalities in New York come from speeding drivers. If passed, the bill would require drivers to install a special device that holds the vehicle’s speed to five miles per hour over the posted limit.
New York City is generally packed with slow-moving cars, but it saw an uptick in pedestrian deaths in 2022. Shockingly, the city saw 59 fatal incidents in the first quarter of the year, and 131 people died in the first half of this year. This type of legislation will likely start popping up in other states. Pedestrian deaths reached a 41-year high in 2022, with more than 7,500 people killed by vehicles.
Though it sounds heavy-handed, the bill in its current form gives drivers plenty of chances to slow down before the device comes into play. Drivers who get six tickets in a year or rack up 11 or more points on their license in 18 months are candidates for the device, but some feel the number should be much lower. Speaking with CBS News, one Brooklyn resident said, “Give them three. Three is enough. After three, let’s do something.”
New York City has piloted the devices in city vehicles and found that drivers obeyed the speed limit 99 percent of the time with them installed. Lawmakers said they were inspired by the interlock devices that convicted DUI offenders have to install in some cases. Several states require the breathalyzer boxes, but New York would be the first to require a speed-limiting device. We don’t know how much the speed limiters cost, but drivers will likely be on the hook to pay for them.