Department of Transportation

Safety Service Patrol

The New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) launched its service patrol program in 1994 and in 2011 reorganized and renamed the program from the Emergency Service Patrol (ESP) to the Safety Service Patrol (SSP) to concentrate patrol on highway areas that have demonstrated the greatest need for motorist assists.

truck photo NJDOT's SSP patrols 225 linear miles of interstate and state highways throughout New Jersey. They assist motorists whose vehicles have become disabled as a result of a crash, a mechanical failure or other cause, and provide safety for emergency responders. This highly visible and successful program assists nearly 70,000 customers annually. Assistance includes changing a flat tire, pushing a disabled vehicle off to the shoulder, pulling a vehicle trapped in mud or snow back onto the road, providing a small amount of gasoline and making minor repairs. Along with assisting disabled vehicles and drivers on our highways, SSP drivers also assist the New Jersey State Police (NJSP) and other secondary responders by promoting safety and diverting traffic during incidents and creating a safe work zone for emergency responders. On the freeways where there is SSP coverage, the average duration to clear an incident is less than 40 minutes.

The SSP is alerted by the NJSP when their operators receive calls from 911. Patrol drivers are typically the first responders on location and their trucks are equipped with traffic cones, safety flares, air compressors, a variety of tools and first aid kits. Vehicles in the SSP fleet also include mounted Dynamic Message Signs (DMS) advising motorists to Slow Down and Move Over in support of the Move Over Law.

In addition to Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) funding, and as part of a public-private partnership, as of April 2012, State Farm® is sponsoring NJDOT's Safety Service Patrol Program.

SSP vehicles and drivers are easily recognizable and provide an informational brochure (pdf 1.5m) to assisted motorists who are encouraged to share their feedback online.

There is never a charge to motorists for services provided and SSP drivers cannot accept tips. SSP employees cannot accept cash or anything of value from a motorist they assist on the roadway or a private firm sent out to help a disabled motorist. In addition, NJDOT SSP drivers are not authorized to contact State Farm on behalf of motorists or assist in insurance claims.

Call 911 for assistance from the Safety Service Patrol.


Last updated date: October 15, 2020 1:58 PM