BUFFALO, N.Y. — A “staggering” number of motorists across the state, including Western New York, lose their driver’s license every year. The state suspends more than a half-million annually; the count in Erie County approaches 26,000.

Drivers can lose their license without violating traffic laws. Failure to pay state taxes or make child support payments are among the offenses that can result in a driver losing their license. Still, nearly two-thirds of suspensions result from the failure to pay traffic tickets or show up in court in response to getting one.

In theory, losing a license keeps drivers off the road. But national studies have found most who lose their license continue to drive. An Investigative Post estimate puts that figure in Erie County at about 10,000. And the number could be higher. For more on this story, please visit the Investigative Post website.