D.C. passed a bill to crack down on speeding check How Would the Point System Work?

n the wake of a tragic incident on Rock Creek Parkway, the Washington D.C. Council has passed the STEER Act, a comprehensive bill aimed at cracking down on speeding and enhancing road safety. This legislation represents a significant overhaul of the city’s approach to managing traffic violations and dangerous driving behaviors.

Let’s delve into the specifics of the STEER Act, focusing on the point system, its impact on out-of-state drivers, provisions for waiving unpaid traffic tickets, and the implementation of speed governors.

How Would the Point System Work?

The STEER Act introduces a new point system designed to penalize speeding drivers more effectively. Under this system, drivers who commit traffic violations would accumulate points based on the severity of their offenses.

Accumulating a certain number of points would result in stricter penalties, including the possibility of having their vehicles booted and towed. This point-based approach aims to deter dangerous driving by imposing tangible consequences for repeated violations.

The specifics of how many points each type of violation would accrue and the threshold for punitive measures were not detailed in the sources, but the system’s goal is to significantly enhance accountability and safety on D.C. roads.

How Would This Affect Drivers Who Live Outside D.C.?

One of the notable aspects of the STEER Act is its focus on drivers from outside the District of Columbia. Councilmember Charles Allen highlighted that a majority of speeding tickets issued in D.C. are to vehicles registered in other states.

The Act aims to address this disparity by granting the D.C. attorney general the authority to pursue civil action against out-of-state violators. This means that drivers who live outside D.C. but commit traffic violations within the city could face legal and financial repercussions, signaling a broader reach of D.C.’s traffic laws and enhancing the enforcement of road safety regulations across state lines.

I Have an Unpaid Traffic Ticket. Could I Get It Waived?

The STEER Act introduces a forgiveness program that allows drivers to have up to $500 in speeding tickets waived by participating in safe driving classes. This provision is aimed at encouraging drivers to improve their driving habits while providing a financial reprieve for those willing to learn and adhere to safer driving practices.

If you have an unpaid traffic ticket, participating in this program could offer a pathway to having it waived, contingent upon completing the prescribed safe driving education.

Who Would Be Issued Speed Governors?

The legislation does not specifically mention the issuance of speed governors. Speed governors are devices that limit the maximum speed of a vehicle. While they are a known method for controlling vehicle speeds, particularly in commercial vehicles, the STEER Act focuses more on legislative and enforcement measures rather than mandating physical modifications to vehicles.

The Act’s primary mechanisms for reducing speeding and enhancing road safety include the new point system, the ability to boot and tow vehicles of repeat offenders, and the introduction of a forgiveness program for drivers who demonstrate a commitment to safe driving.

In summary, the STEER Act represents a comprehensive effort by the D.C. Council to tackle the issue of speeding and dangerous driving in the city.

Through the introduction of a new point system, expanded authority to target out-of-state violators, a forgiveness program for unpaid tickets, and enhanced legal measures against repeat offenders, the Act aims to significantly improve road safety for all users​

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