NJDOT joins worldwide
World Health Day focuses
on road safety
"Road safety is no accident"
is this year's United Nations World Health
NJDOT joined with the New Jersey Automobile
Club at its Florham Park Headquarters
to mark the April event.
There is an absolute nexus between health
and the need for greater safety on our
highways. Every year, around the world,
an estimated 1.2 million people die in
motor vehicle crashes and 10-15 million
people are injured in these crashes.
Under Governor McGreevey's Safety First
initiative, we are making a dent in the
short and long term safety needs of our
highways. New Jersey is one of only seven
states in the nation that had a reduction
in motor vehicle fatalities, but we will
not rest until all motor vehicle fatalities
are down to zero.
Pedestrian fatalities fell 18 percent
and motor vehicle fatalities fell 3 percent
in the past year.
Municipalities conducted special World
Health Day child seat checks throughout
the state, free of charge, to ensure users
have installed them properly. I advocate
standardization of the seats to make the
system as simple as plugging in a toaster.
NJDOT has undertaken several measures
over the last year under Governor McGreevey's
"Safe Corridors" bill including
engineering and technological improvements,
adding 500 miles of raised pavement reflectors,
recording driver safety and public safety
announcements and expanding driver education
Other enhanced safety programs are our
Safe Streets to Schools program, bike
and pedestrian friendly trails for municipalities,
increasing the number of the Emergency
Service Patrols on state highways and
promoting the #77 aggressive driver hotline
Work zone safety requires
in motor vehicle work zone crashes
increased more than 50 percent in
the last five years nationally;
non-motorist fatalities (workers,
pedestrians, bicyclists) in work
zone crashes average around 140
persons every year nationally.
- U.S. Department of Transportation,
Federal Highway Administration,
"Creating Safer Work Zones"
Each day when I look outside my window
at the NJDOT Employee Memorial, I am
reminded that it honors 32 of our employees
killed in the line of duty - many of
them in work zone accidents.
NJDOT joined fellow members of the
New Jersey Work Zone Safety Partnership
at our Fifth Annual Work Zone Safety
Awareness Conference and New Technology
Showcase in April. National Work Zone
Awareness Week is a time for the transportation
family to recommit itself to increasing
In May we will engrave one more name,
Kyle Kristensen, a Drawbridge Operator
who was killed on the Victory Bridge in
Perth Amboy, on the plaque on the NJDOT
All 33 names will be submitted for placement
on the National Work Zone Memorial. This
memorial honors not only work zone employees,
but also motorists, pedestrians, children,
law enforcement officers and public safety
officials such as fire fighters and paramedics.
It travels nationwide to raise public
awareness of the need to respect and stay
safe in America's roadway work zones.