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Former Traffic Court Judge Serving New York and New Jersey

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Experts urge motorists to drive safely this July 4th

At this very moment, people here in the state of New York and across the country are busy navigating crowded highways and interstates in an attempt to make their way to a favorite vacation destination for the July 4th holiday.

However, as you take to the roads over what is perhaps an extended vacation, remember to always drive safely. In fact, experts have shared two basic tips to help motorists avoid traffic tickets and other unintended consequences.

Obey the speed limit: When preparing for a vacation, it can be relatively easy to lose track of time and hit the road much later than you originally planned. However, experts advise you to resist the urge to speed to make up time. While you may feel that traffic levels permit you to drive faster than normal, it's important to remember that it's still dangerous and can still result in a large ticket.

In fact, experts warn that in many states driving more than 10 miles-per-hour over the speed limit and weaving in and out of lanes can result in a reckless driving ticket, which can cost anywhere from $500 to $1000, significantly increase your insurance rates and even result in license suspension.

Hang up your cell phone: Remember that using a phone or handheld device to talk while driving is considered a primary offense here in New York, meaning that any law enforcement official in the state can stop and ticket you solely for this act. In addition, texting while driving is also a primary offense and the penalties can be rather severe, including a $150 fine and three points against a driver's license.

It's also important to remember that other states may have similar laws in place, so keep your phone off as you are driving. If you need to talk or text, experts advise you to stop the car in a safe location before doing so.

Stay tuned for more from our New York vehicle traffic law blog ...

If you have been issued a traffic violation, fight to keep your driving privileges and your insurance premiums as low as possible. Consider contacting an attorney who understands New York's confusing legal system, and who can help you evaluate your options and make the right decisions.

This post was provided for informational purposes only and is not to be construed as legal advice.

Source:

CBS News, "July 4th: How to waste money and endanger people," Kathy Kristof, July 3, 2012

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