WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. House of Representatives on Tuesday passed H.R.4089, the Darren Drake Act, bipartisan legislation led by Congressman Josh Gottheimer (NJ-5) to stop ISIS-inspired and lone-wolf terrorists from using trucks and other vehicles as weapons.
The legislation is named in memory of New Milford resident Darren Drake, a victim of the October 2017 New York City West Side Highway terrorist truck attacks. The bill’s lead Republican cosponsor is Congressman Brian Fitzpatrick (PA-01).
To help prevent terrorist truck attacks, the Darren Drake Act will require the Department of Homeland Security to develop and disseminate best practices for vehicle rental companies and dealers to report suspicious behavior to law enforcement, helping them stop potential threats in their paths. These best practices will be developed and updated in consultation with federal, state and local law enforcement, as well as industry stakeholders.
The bill will also require the Secretary of Homeland Security to report to Congress regarding the implementation of these best practices and other ways they are working to help improve coordination between the Department and rental vehicle providers.
“This commonsense, bipartisan bill is aimed at stopping ISIS-inspired, lone-wolf, and domestic terrorists from easily acquiring trucks and other vehicles to wreak havoc and cause mass destruction and death,” Gottheimer said. “It is an important addition to our arsenal as we work to eradicate threats of terror across our nation and I am proud to have led this initiative — in Darren’s memory — to help prevent future attacks and save lives. It is the least we can do.”
Gottheimer has been working closely with Darren’s parents, Barbara and Jimmy Drake, to craft and fight to pass this bipartisan legislation.
“With this bill passing the House today, we are one step closer to helping save more lives, so that everyone across the country can be safe from attacks,” said Jimmy Drake, father of Darren Drake.
In late September 2021, the Darren Drake Act was debated on the House floor.