New Jersey's 11th Legislative District

Senator Jennifer Beck

Senator Jennifer Beck

Beck Bill Barring Drivers with DUI Conviction from Operating NJ Transit Trains Clears Senate

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Legislation sponsored by Senator Jennifer Beck (R-Monmouth) to prohibit persons with DUI-related suspended or revoked licenses from operating NJ Transit trains passed the full Senate 38-0.

Sen. Jennifer Beck’s bill prohibits persons with DUI-related suspended or revoked licenses from operating NJ Transit trains. (SenateNJ.com)

“It’s incomprehensible that state law allows a person who is prohibited from driving a car due to DUI-related issues to drive a train with hundreds of passengers,” said Beck. “NJ Transit operators are entrusted with safely transporting thousands of passengers a day. They have to be held accountable. If you cannot be trusted to drive a car, you shouldn’t be trusted to drive a train either.”

Senator Beck’s bill was drafted in the wake of WABC’s investigative report on a New Jersey Transit engineer who is permitted under current law to continue driving commuter trains despite having lost his motor vehicle driver’s for ten years for alcohol related issues, the latest in a string of such suspensions. Senator Beck’s legislation, S-20, would apply to all NJ Transit employees who operate trains or light rail cars.

Under S-20, any person whose driver’s license is suspended or revoked for a DUI, or for refusing to take a breathalyzer test, in New Jersey or any other state, would be barred from operating NJ Transit trains or light rail cars.

The legislation was introduced, brought for an emergency, and passed the full Senate 38-0 during the May 26 voting session.

“Nearly 400,000 people board NJ Transit trains on an average weekday,” Senator Beck added. “We owe it to every single rider to close this major safety loophole as soon as possible. I am pleased to join Senate President Sweeney in his efforts to swiftly advance this lifesaving legislation.”

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