Like other states, North Carolina has a program under which the state’s Division of Motor Vehicles can suspend a driver’s operating license for repeat traffic infractions, including infractions that are not criminal in nature.

For instance, North Carolina has a point system under which certain traffic violations get assessed as points against one’s license. In theory, more serious traffic violations will lead to more points getting assessed.

So, by way of example, driving aggressively or passing a school bus that has stopped will cost a non-commercial driver 5 points, while getting caught traveling 5 miles per hour over the speed limit will ordinarily cost 2 points.

Should a driver accumulate 12 or more points in any three-year period of time, the driver will face a 60-day suspension of his or her license. A second suspension for having too many points must last for 6 months, while any further suspensions for habitually poor driving are for a minimum of one year.

Drivers should also be aware that, if they do get suspended for having too many points, then for the first three years after their suspension, they are only allotted 8 points before facing another, and longer, suspension.

The bottom line for residents of Rocky Mount, particularly for those who do not have a perfect driving record, is that traffic offenses can have consequences that reach a lot further than having to pay a couple hundred dollars. As North Carolina’s point system shows, someone with too many offenses in a short time can wind up being unable to drive legally. This is one reason why a person accused of a traffic offense, even if it is not a criminal matter, should consider speaking with an experienced attorney.