Stretch Limo Ban – Sweeping Reform or Government Overreach?
In response to the horrific stretched limousine accident in Schoharie County, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced sweeping safety reforms that will be included in his 2019 executive budget. These reforms will include:
- The outright ban of remanufactured limousines;
- Require all drivers to hold a commercial driver license while operating for hire vehicles holding 8 or more passengers;
- Make it a felony to remove an out of service sticker placed by the DOT;
- Make it a felony to operate a vehicle with suspended DOT authority with a maximum fine of $25,000 per violation;
- Establish more stringent registration and vehicle impoundment powers including allowing the DOT Commissioner to suspended operating authority when health, safety, or public welfare of the public is at risk;
- Grant the DOT the authority to seize suspended license plates;
- Make it a felony to tamper with a Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard tag or inspection sticker;
- Require vehicle impoundment for all felony violations and subject multiple violators to potential civil forfeiture of the vehicle;
- Mandatory reporting of all attempts for an unauthorized inspection;
- Create new civil penalties for illegally issuing an inspection sticker;
- Prohibit all U-turns for larger vehicles;
- Require all limousines, buses, taxis, liveries, and school buses to have seatbelts;
- Establish a DOT inspection fee of $120 per inspection.
On October 6, 2018, a limousine ran a stop sign and slammed into a parked vehicle killing all 18 people in the limousine and two pedestrians making it the deadliest motor vehicle accident in the United States in a decade. It has been reported that the vehicle involved in the crash had been ordered to be kept out of service by the Department of Transportation. It has also been reported that the driver did not have the proper license to operate the vehicle. The son of the owner of the limo company was also charged with criminally negligent homicide. It has been reported that he was charged with this felony offense because he put a defective vehicle back on the road and hired a driver that he knew was not properly licensed.
If you or a loved one has received a summons or been arrested, contact our attorneys at The Law Offices of Michael H. Ricca, P.C. at (516) 500-1647 once you are able to do so for your free telephone consultation or visit us online at www.NassauCountyTrafficLawyer.com and complete our legal consultation form.