Prohibits any person from attempting to or to in fact alter, deface, injure, knock down, cover, remove or otherwise interfere with any traffic control device or railroad sign or signal; provides an affirmative defense therefor that operator can show he or she was not aware of the device.
BILL NUMBER: S4128
TITLE OF BILL :
An act to amend the vehicle and traffic law, in relation to prohibiting the use of any device which affects the operation of a traffic-control signal
To prohibit the operation of any vehicle, except an emergency vehicle, that is equipped with a device which affects the operation of a traffic control signal.
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS :
The bill defines the term 'traffic-control signal preemption device' and makes it a violation to alter a traffic-control signal by attempting to change the signal indications by use of such device. The bill also provides exceptions where the operator can show by credible evidence that he or she was not aware of the presence of the device.
There are people willing to pay as much as $1,000 for a device that allows them to change a red light to green right from their drivers seat as if they were law enforcement officers on call. The purpose of the existence of such devices is for emergency access and not for the convenience for someone who wants to get home earlier from work or to dodge traffic. These devices exist and are currently in use by non-emergency personnel. Public safety dictates the need to make the use of such devices illegal by persons other than authorized emergency personnel. Such devices flaunt public safety concerns and could cause serious personal injury or death on New York roadways.
LEGISLATIVE HISTORY :
2005-06: A.6709; 2007-2008: S.4423
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS :
EFFECTIVE DATE : This act shall take effect on the first of November next succeeding the date on which it shall have become law.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ S. 4128 A. 7508 2009-2010 Regular Sessions S E N A T E - A S S E M B L Y April 14, 2009 ___________IN SENATE -- Introduced by Sen. LAVALLE -- read twice and ordered print- ed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Transporta- tion IN ASSEMBLY -- Introduced by M. of A. CANESTRARI -- read once and referred to the Committee on Transportation AN ACT to amend the vehicle and traffic law, in relation to prohibiting the use of any device which affects the operation of a traffic-control signal THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. Section 1115 of the vehicle and traffic law, as amended by chapter 315 of the laws of 1969, is amended to read as follows: S 1115. Interference with official traffic-control devices, railroad signs or signals and other highway appurtenances. (a) No person shall, without lawful authority, attempt to or in fact alter, deface, injure, knock down, cover, remove, or otherwise interfere with any official traffic-control device or any railroad sign or signal, or any inscription, shield, or insignia thereon, or any other part thereof; any bridge or similar structure; any monument, lamppost, telephone pole, fence, walk, curb, tree, rock cut or other appurtenance on a highway right of way. (b) For the purposes of this section
[,]THE FOLLOWING TERMS SHALL HAVE THE FOLLOWING MEANINGS: 1. to ['deface']"DEFACE" shall include, but not be limited to, to damage, destroy, disfigure, erase, ruin, distort, spoil or otherwise change the external appearance of an object by the use of chalk, crayon, paint, stain, ink or other similar material. 2. TO "ALTER" A TRAFFIC-CONTROL SIGNAL SHALL INCLUDE, BUT NOT BE LIMITED TO, CHANGING OR ATTEMPTING TO CHANGE THE SIGNAL INDICATIONS OF AEXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD02597-01-9 S. 4128 2 A. 7508
TRAFFIC-CONTROL SIGNAL BY USE OF A TRAFFIC-CONTROL SIGNAL PREEMPTION DEVICE. 3. "TRAFFIC-CONTROL SIGNAL PREEMPTION DEVICE" SHALL MEAN ANY DEVICE DESIGNED OR USED TO CHANGE OR ATTEMPT TO CHANGE THE SIGNAL INDICATIONS OF A TRAFFIC-CONTROL SIGNAL. (C) THE PRESENCE IN A VEHICLE OF A TRAFFIC-CONTROL SIGNAL PREEMPTION DEVICE CONNECTED TO A POWER SOURCE AND IN AN OPERABLE CONDITION IS PRESUMPTIVE EVIDENCE OF ITS USE BY ANY PERSON OPERATING SUCH VEHICLE. SUCH PRESUMPTION SHALL BE REBUTTED BY ANY CREDIBLE AND RELIABLE EVIDENCE WHICH TENDS TO SHOW THAT SUCH DEVICE WAS NOT IN USE. S 2. This act shall take effect on the first of November next succeed- ing the date on which it shall have become a law.