The New York State DMV and The Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee has launched a two-week statewide program known as “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over.” The intent of the program, which runs from August 17, 2018 through Labor Day, September 3, 2018, is to step up enforcement of drunk and drugged driving as well as to educate motorists.
As many people begin to wind down their summers, concerts, parties, and other fun outings are still in full swing. New York State is urging all motorists to safely enjoy these outings. If you intend to drink, have a plan in place so you do not need to drive. This can include designating a sober driver, taking a cab or rideshare service, or calling a friend or family member to drive you.
State police have advised during this campaign they will step up enforcement efforts to remove intoxicated, drug impaired, and distracted drivers from roadways. While everyone wants to enjoy the final few weeks of summer, please remember to drink responsibly. State and local police officers have a zero-tolerance policy for reckless individuals who choose to drive while impaired.
New York State has launched a free app, “Have a Plan,” which is available for mobile download on Apple, Droid, and Windows smart phones. Through the app you can set up a designated driver list as well as locate and call a cab or rideshare service. In addition, the app provides education on blood alcohol content levels and DWI laws, as well as allows individuals to report a driver they suspect of operating a motor vehicle while impaired.
As part of this campaign, motorists can expect to see an increase in sobriety checkpoints along with an increase in law enforcement. Below are our top three tips when coming to a sobriety checkpoint. Check back to our December 2017 blog post for the full listing of our top ten tips that we recommend when coming to a sobriety checkpoint.
1. Just because you are stopped does not automatically mean you are going to be arrested. Be aware that you do have the right to remain silent. The law enforcement officer may ask you where you are coming from or if you have been drinking. You do not need to answer these questions. Tell the law enforcement officer that you are expressing your right to remain silent.
2. You may be asked to take a field sobriety or a breathalyzer test. You do not have to submit to either test, however, failure to do so can result in fines and time in jail. You may also lose your driver’s license for up to 1 year.
3. If you are arrested, remain silent and ask for a lawyer. Law enforcement may not continue to question you once you have requested a lawyer.
Keep in mind that law enforcement will be using both marked State Police Trooper Vehicles as well as Concealed Identity Traffic Enforcement (CITE) vehicles during this campaign. CITE vehicles blend in with other vehicles on the road, however, once the emergency lighting is activated, it is unmistakable as a law enforcement vehicle.
The Law Offices of Michael H. Ricca represents motorists throughout Nassau and Suffolk Counties. To learn more about DWIs or if you have received a traffic ticket or are charged with a DWI either through a traffic stop or a DWI checkpoint contact our attorneys at (516) 500-1647 for your free telephone consultation or visit us online at www.RiccaLaw.com and complete our legal consultation form.