New York drivers are expected to maintain a safe distance between themselves and the vehicles in front of them. That is why following too closely – also known as tailgating – carries serious penalties.
According to New York traffic law, drivers must not follow another vehicle more closely than is “reasonable and prudent” given the present road conditions. Since the definition of this law is quite vague, police officers are given plenty of discretion in issuing a tailgating ticket.
A first tailgating offense carries a maximum fine of $150. A second offense within 18 months is punishable by a fine of up to $300, while a third offense in 18 months can result in a maximum fine of $450.
Regarding points, following too closely is a four-point offense. This means it is one of the traffic violations in the state with the highest number of points.
The main reason why New York drivers are required to leave enough space between themselves and the vehicles in front of them is that they will have time to react to unexpected traffic conditions and potentially avoid an accident. Furthermore, if the vehicle in front of you brakes when you are tailgating, you may be held liable for causing a rear-end collision.
If you been cited for following another vehicle too closely in New York City, contact Stites Law today at (212) 729-0472 to let us protect your rights and driving privileges.