Mayor Bill de Blasio's SUV caught breaking traffic laws

The mayor's office says de Blasio was in the front passenger seat while an NYPD officer was driving. (2/21/14)

NEW YORK - Mayor Bill de Blasio's official SUV was spotted breaking a number of traffic laws, just two days after he laid out a sweeping traffic safety plan that includes harsh restrictions on reckless driving. 

De Blasio was in the front passenger seat of the lead two-vehicle caravan when it was captured on video allegedly speeding, running through a pair of stop signs and failing to signal while changing lanes. The footage was obtained by WCBS-TV Thursday. 

De Blasio's office is deferring specific questions about the incident to the police because it says that an NYPD officer who is part of the mayor's security team was behind the wheel at the time. His press secretary also released a statement saying in part, "Public safety is everyone's responsibility." It did not include an apology or admission of wrongdoing. 

READ MORE: Transportation Stories

During an unrelated news conference, the mayor refused to answer questions on the issue, stating that he has great respect for the NYPD's security training and protocols, and that he is committed to traffic safety and safe streets in New York City.

The NYPD released a comment saying, "The handling of police vehicles transporting any protectee is determined solely by police personnel based on their specialized training in executive protection and professional judgment."

The mayor's proposed "Vision Zero" traffic plan includes lowering the speed limit citywide to 25 mph, expanding neighborhood slow zones, and installing more speed and red light enforcement cameras.

For more on de Blasio's comments, watch the clip to the left or click News 12 Extra on Optimum TV channel 612. 

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