Syracuse (WSYR-TV) -- New York State is taking steps to keep drivers with a history of repeat alcohol or drug-related driving convictions off the road.
Under Governor Cuomo’s direction, the State DMV has issued new regulations that will make our state’s protection among the toughest in the nation.
For starters, the new rules will allow the DMV to review lifetime records of those convicted drivers when they apply to have their license reinstated.
Once the DMV does that, they’ll deny any application for reinstatement if the driver has five or more alcohol or drug-related offenses in his or her lifetime.
They will also deny people who have three or more alcohol or drug related convictions in the last 25 years, plus a serious driving offense. That includes a fatal crash, a driving-related penal law conviction or 20 or more points for driving violations in the past 25 years, or having two or more driving convictions each worth five points or higher.
If a driver has three or four alcohol or drug-related convictions, but doesn’t have a serious driving offense in the last 25 years, the DMV could deny their applications for five years beyond their statutory revocation period, or two additional years if the applicant's license was revoked for a reason other than a drug or alcohol-related offense.
The DMV will also restore the applicant's license after the additional period as a "restricted" license. For the drivers convicted of an alcohol related offense, an interlock device on their vehicle will be required for five years.
“Our objective is to stop these folks from putting the keys in the ignition and stay out from behind the wheel. Our hope is to one day not have to arrest a drunk driver because their drunk and to never again have to knock on a door and tell a mother, father or family member that their loved one is not coming home,” said Superintendent of New York State Joseph D’Amico.
At least 20,000 drivers are expected to have their license permanently revoked or delayed this year because of the new regulations.