Two men were facing charges after New York authorities accused them of driving under the influence while being in possession of drugs on Oct. 17. The two individuals were identified as a 22-year-old Danbury man and a 35-year-old Waterbury resident, both from Connecticut.
The initial results of ride-sharing programs in Western New York are positive when it comes to limiting drunk driving. While ride-sharing has only been offered for a short time in the Buffalo area, driving while intoxicated-stops have already decreased. This is especially powerful because DWI rates typically rise in the summer.
Impaired driving regardless of the source of intoxication could result in criminal charges for New York motorists. According to a survey, detection of marijuana in the systems of drivers has risen by 50 percent in the past seven years whereas alcohol consumption by drivers has fallen 77 percent since 1973. A scientist from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety noted that both intoxicants present dangers. Drivers impaired by alcohol tend to be more reckless, while those who are under the influence of marijuana might have slower response times.
Driving under the influence of marijuana is illegal in New York as well as all other states. But unlike intoxication by alcohol, which can be measured by authorities at a stop, there is no reliable breath test for marijuana intoxication. That could change as some companies are working to develop breath testing devices for marijuana impairment.
The Port Authority Police in Staten Island arrested a man who appeared disoriented and intoxicated after he refused to cooperate with their attempt to conduct a field sobriety test. A police sergeant said that he witnessed the 26-year-old man driving a 2013 Dodge Durango eastward in the westbound off ramp for Goethals Road North.
On June 4, it was reported that the former head coach of the New York Knicks, Derek Fisher, was taken into custody on suspicion of drunk driving. The report said that the arrest came after the former head coach flipped his vehicle while driving on U.S. 101.
New Yorkers might want to be aware that Albany County has adopted a zero-tolerance policy for repeat drunk driving offenders. The new policy was announced on May 26 in advance of the Memorial Day weekend.
The New York State Court of Appeals voted unanimously on May 9 to uphold controversial rules that allow the Department of Motor Vehicles to permanently revoke the driving privileges of repeat drunk drivers. The 5-0 vote by the state's highest court brings a contentious lawsuit filed by three New York residents to an end. More than 13,600 applications for the reinstatement of driving privileges have been declined by the DMV commissioner since the rules went into effect in 2012 according to figures released by the office of Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
Drivers in New York may be interested in a recent study conducted by researchers at the Colorado School of Public Health and Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. The results of the study show that state laws mandating the use of ignition interlocks for individuals convicted of drunk driving offenses are a significant factor in the reduction drunk driving crashes that cause fatalities.
New York motorists may have heard that the rate of drugged driving may be more common than once thought. The prevalence of the behavior, as well as a rise in traffic fatalities caused by drug impairment in certain parts of the country, could be due to the increase in drug abuse, particularly heroin and methamphetamines.