Google-owned navigation app Waze is hitting back at The New York Police Department’s demand that it stop warning drivers about sobriety checkpoints.
The NYPD sent the internet giant a cease-and-desist letter that calls for it to ‘immediately remove’ the police-spotting feature from the Waze app, claiming it helps drunk drivers skirt law enforcement officials.
Waze, which Google acquired for over $1 billion in 2013, collects crowd-sourced reports on things like traffic, accidents and police activity that are then mapped in the app.
It maintains the feature shows ‘general police presence’ and not DWI checkpoints specifically.
In the letter sent to Google last weekend, the NYPD demanded the firm ‘immediately’ remove the DWI reporting function in the Waze app.
‘Individuals who post the locations of DWI checkpoints may be engaging in criminal conduct since such actions could be intentional attempts to prevent and/or impair the administration of the DWI laws and other relevant criminal and traffic laws,’ Ann Prunty, the NYPD’s acting deputy commissioner for legal matters, wrote in the letter, which was first spotted by Streetsblog NYC.
‘The posting of such information for public consumption is irresponsible since it only serves to aid impaired and intoxicated drivers to evade checkpoints and encourage reckless driving.
‘Revealing the location of checkpoints puts those drivers, their passengers, and the general public at risk,’ she continued.