In New York, reckless driving is defined as operating a vehicle in a way that unreasonably endangers drivers or pedestrians on public roads, or unreasonably interferes with using a public road. In other words, knowingly driving in a manner that risks the safety of others for no reason whatsoever, which is more than just mere negligence.
Common examples of reckless driving include:
- Speeding or driving at excessive speeds according to current driving conditions
- Driving the wrong way
- Ignoring a traffic sign or signal
- Improper passing, failing to signal or using the shoulder to pass another vehicle
- Weaving through traffic
- Racing other vehicles
- Driving a vehicle with significant issues, such as faulty brakes
Unlike most traffic violations, reckless driving is a misdemeanor offense. A conviction can potentially result in jail time and a criminal record.
The following is a breakdown of the possible penalties for reckless driving in New York:
- First offense – Maximum jail sentence of 30 days and fines of up to $300 (including a maximum $93 surcharge)
- Second offense (within 18 months) – Maximum jail term of 90 days and fines of up to $525 (including a maximum $93 surcharge)
- Third offense (within 18 months) – Maximum jail sentence of 180 days and fines of up to $1,125 (including a maximum $93 surcharge)
Additionally, a reckless driving conviction will incur five (5) points. If you amass 11 points within an 18-month period, your driver’s license will be suspended.
When facing reckless driving charges, simply paying the ticket is not an option. You need to hire an experienced attorney to help you avoid serious criminal and administrative penalties.
At Collins Gann McCloskey & Barry PLLC, our legal team protects the rights and freedom of clients facing a wide variety of traffic violations in Nassau County and the surrounding areas. Let us help you get your entire case dismissed or negotiate with the judge and prosecutor in your case to significantly reduce the penalties you face, so you avoid serving time behind bars.
If you have been charged with reckless driving in New York, contact us today at (516) 218-5131 and schedule a free case review.