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NYC Councilman Proposes Law Aimed At Reckless Drivers « CBS New York


NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Reckless drivers may soon get the boot.

A local councilman wants the worst offenders in New York City off the roads. His plan would boot their cars until they take a special driving class, CBS2’s Andrea Grymes reported Thursday.

Flowers and teddy bears still mark 5th Avenue and 9th Street in Park Slope, the intersection where two little kids were hit and killed while crossing the street with their mothers back in March.

“There was a lot of people crying when it just happened,” Park Slope worker Charles Deweese said.

A Brooklyn community is still mourning the loss of two young children who were killed in a crash in Brooklyn that also left their mothers hurt. (Photo: CBS2)

Now, three months later, there is a new push from Brooklyn City Councilman Brad Lander, whose office is just feet away.

“The goal is to change people’s behavior before they do real harm,” Lander said.

He’s introducing the Reckless Driver Accountability Act in the City Council, which could lead to thousands of more cars getting the boot.

Under the legislation, if a driver gets four red-light or speed-camera violations within one year, they’ll get a warning. Get five, Lander said, and a driver has 10 days to enroll in a reckless driving class.

“If you don’t, we’re gonna boot the car and you’re still gonna have to come in and take the course, and pay the fee for the course and pay the fee for the booting before you get your car back,” Lander said.

Lander pointed out the driver indicted in the March crash, Dorothy Bruns, had five such violations in 2017 alone.

Lander said his bill targets the worst offenders — that’s about 26,000 cars.

Reaction to the plan is mixed.

“Even a small step like that, changing the law, might wake people up a little more,” said Crystal Lawrence of Park Slope.

“I have a problem with the red-light cameras, themselves, because you lend your car to someone and then they’re driving it,” resident Jonah Pried added. “It’s hard to say whether it’s a good idea or not.”

“If you get one, maybe you go contest it. It’s a mistake,” Lander said. “If you get five in a year, I think that says you’re allowing your car to be used in a way that’s like a weapon aimed at your neighbors and you should change your behavior.”

The councilman said he’s still figuring out how much the fines will be for drivers. With the summer coming up, he doesn’t expect a hearing on the bill until the fall.

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