As it stands, the government will only seize a vehicle for a few very serious offenses. If it’s being used to traffic drugs or weapons, if it was the cause of a deliberate fatality, or perhaps if you held up a bank and used your truck as a getaway van, you could reasonably suspect that the government might not let you keep on driving. It seems pretty reasonable that these offenses could warrant seizing a vehicle, but one offense may get added to that list, and it might just surprise you.
If NY Senator Tony Avella gets his way, the government could have the right to seize your truck for driving on non-designated truck routes. Yes, that’s right, if you drive through a quiet neighborhood, it won’t just be a fine, it’ll also cost your truck.
Now, to be fair, Senator Avella’s proposal says that this would be a punishment for repeat offenders only, but what he means is this: If you are pulled over in a residential area driving a vehicle that weighs over 10,000lbs three times in an 18 month period, then law enforcement can seize and keep your vehicle.
“One of the most frequent quality of life complaints my office receives is illegal truck traffic,” Avella said. “The incidence of illegal truck traffic has increased dramatically throughout my district and beyond. All too often, these huge trucks and tractor-trailers drive through quiet residential streets with little or no regard for residents, creating traffic congestion, noise, pollution and vibrations that shake the foundation of homes.”
Despite previous legislative efforts that have increased the penalties issued to truck drivers for truck route violations, many trucking companies and drivers disregard these fines as merely the cost of doing business,” Avella said. “Therefore, the only other option is to seize the vehicles of perpetual violators of the truck traffic regulations.”
Really, Senator? This is “The only other option?” I don’t know any drivers who have so much money lying around that they think paying fines costing hundreds of dollars is merely “the cost of doing business.” Perhaps it might behoove you to find out why so many drivers have to drive through these areas in the first place. They certainly aren’t getting fined by choice.
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