You’re driving on the New Jersey Turnpike and speeding to work because you are running late. You find yourself swerving in and out of traffic—driving way above the speed limit—and tailgating people in front of you. As far as you’re concerned, you think they are going too slow (although they are actually going the speed limit). The reality is that driving aggressively isn’t going to get you to work any faster, but in the heat of the moment, you feel justified.
In the meantime, you somehow manage to zoom past a state trooper. The officer has clocked you at 20 miles per hour above the speed limit and has also determined that you’re not traveling at a safe distance from the vehicles in front of you.
The next thing you know you see the oncoming blue flashing lights in your rearview mirror. You feel an awful pull in the pit of your stomach as you are pulled over. Ultimately,the trooper writes you tickets for speeding and tailgating. The cost of worrying about being late for work just got expensive.
The High Price of Traffic Violations
Speeding and tailgating–following another car too closely–are two typical examples of moving violations that you can receive as a result of being in a hurry. In fact, after speeding, tailgating is the second leading cause of vehicle accidents statewide.
New Jersey is a busy place, and just about everyone is in a hurry. Of course, if you’re rushing, you might also run a traffic light, pull a rolling stop at a stop sign, or make an improper U-turn. Being in a hurry can have dangerous, even tragic, consequences for both you and others. You could crash into another car, or endanger and hurt—or kill—a pedestrian or bicyclist.
If you are caught speeding under N.J.S.A. 39:4-98, you will pay a price. You will be fined based on how many miles over the speed limit you are going. For going one to nine miles over the speed limit, your fine will be $85. If you are exceeding the speed limit by 10 to 14 mph, your fine will be $95. If you are speeding 15 to 19 miles per hour over the speed limit, the fine increases to $105. The prices only go up with each increase in speed.
Exceeding the limit by 20 to 24 miles per hour will cost you a hefty $200, and $220 for exceeding by 25 to 29 miles per hour. And if you are 30 to 39 miles per hour over the speed limit, your fine will be $240 to $260.
That’s not all. A speeding ticket of one to 14 miles over the limit is a two-point offense on your license; above 14 mph and under 29 mph is a four-point offense; and 30 or more over the limit is a five-point offense. Fines will double if you are ticketed in a construction zone. And your insurance premium might go up. Depending on your circumstances, you could even get a suspended license and jail time.
So, has rushing to work been worth it? Wait, there’s more. A New Jersey tailgating ticket will also have serious consequences. Under N.J.S.A. 39:4-89, “The driver of a vehicle shall not follow another vehicle more closely than is reasonable and prudent, having due regard to the speed of the preceding vehicle and the traffic upon, and condition of, the highway.”
New Jersey police have been cracking down on tailgating using improved laser technology. If you are cited for tailgating, you will receive five points on your license and a fine of $85. But if you are a charged with tailgating in a designated safe corridor, construction zone, or 65 mile-per-hour area, the fine increases to $140. And a tailgating charge will have more serious repercussions if it causes a serious car accident or injuries. Jail time, a suspended license, and higher insurance rates are all possible consequences.
An experienced traffic ticket attorney can help you argue speeding and tailgating charged. Call the Law Offices of Beninato & Matrafaljo now for a free consultation. We will help you find the best way to fight your tickets for traffic violations.