Driving in an Unsafe Manner (NJSA 39:4-97.2)
NJSA 39:4-97.2 is a catch-all provision that simply states, “Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary, it shall be unlawful for any person to drive or operate a motor vehicle in any unsafe manner likely to endanger a person or property.”
Fines and Penalties
A first offense will result in a fine between $50 and $150. A second offense will result in a fine between $100 and $150. A third offense will result in a fine between $200 and $500.
You will also be assessed a $250 surcharge, which will be distributed to the Division of Revenue in the Department of the Treasury. This applies to any offense, including your first, and it is charged in addition to the above fines, not instead of them.
Obviously, driving in an unsafe manner in New Jersey is an expensive proposition, but unlike most other driving violations, you will not receive any traffic points for a first or second offense. However, for a third or subsequent offense that occurs within five years of your most recent offense, you will have four points added to your driving record.
You should take these points seriously, because if you get six points on your record in any three-year period, you will be fined $150 (plus $25 for each point above six). If you have 12 points on your record at any time, your license will be suspended.
The points on your record don’t expire, but three points will be subtracted for each year you go without a driving violation or a license suspension. You can also reduce your point total by participating in safe-driver programs, though there is a limit to how many points can be subtracted using this method.
A third or subsequent conviction of driving in an unsafe manner will also earn you four “insurance eligibility points”—a system used by New Jersey auto insurance providers to gauge how much of a risk you present. More points on your record will result in higher insurance premiums, and if you accumulate too many points, you will not be able to buy insurance through any private company and will need to do so through a more expensive state program.
How a New Jersey Traffic Ticket Lawyer Can Help
If you have been accused of driving in an unsafe manner, you are facing steep fines. Additionally, if it is not your first offense, you are at risk of paying higher insurance premiums for three years. To make sure your rights are protected, please call New Jersey traffic ticket lawyer Dan Matrafajlo at (908) 248-4404. With his years of experience defending New Jersey drivers, he may be able to help you get your fines reduced or charges dropped.