Lakewood Joins State Safety Campaign to Reduce Pedestrian and Motor Vehicle Crashes
“Street Smart NJ” targets speed, distractedness and safety awareness for motorists and pedestrians
Lakewood Mayor Menashe Miller announced today that Lakewood will be participating in the Street Smart NJ Safety Campaign, a pedestrian safety education campaign aimed at reducing pedestrian and motor vehicle crashes in New Jersey.
The Street Smart NJ Safety Campaign is a collaborative effort among public, private and non-profit organizations. Representatives from NJTPA (NJ Transportation Planning Authority) will be at various intersections in Lakewood on Wednesday, March 30 and Thursday, March 31 to distribute flyers and information about Street Smart NJ Safety Campaign.
The Lakewood police department with be working with local organizations to educate motorists and pedestrians for several weeks afterwards. Street Teams, groups of professionals and volunteers, will be out in Lakewood, distributing safety tips at busy intersections.
The campaign comes at a significant time. New Jersey is ranked 6th in the nation in pedestrian fatalities, according to 2014 data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The federal government has designated New Jersey a “focus” state, placing an extra emphasis on aiding the state in combating its higher-than-average pedestrian fatality rate and providing funding for this campaign.
During the campaign, motorists and pedestrians will see street signs, posters, tip cards and other educational materials throughout the community. Campaign participants and their partners will also be sending e-blasts to raise additional awareness about pedestrian safety.
“We’ll be interacting with motorists to make sure they know and obey the law, and stop for pedestrians in the crosswalk,” said Lakewood Sgt. Frank Work. “We’ll also be reminding pedestrians to use crosswalks and cross at intersections and not jaywalk.”
Pedestrian safety is an ongoing challenge in New Jersey. In 2014, 170 pedestrians died as a result of pedestrian-vehicle crashes, according to the most recent data available from the New Jersey State Police. From 2010 through 2014, 749 pedestrians were killed on New Jersey’s roads and more than 17,000 were injured, according to the New Jersey State Police. That translates into one death every 2.4 days and 11 injuries daily.
The statewide Street Smart NJ Safety Campaign, which began in 2013, is managed by the North Jersey Transportation Planning Authority (NJTPA). The campaign urges pedestrians and motorists to “Check Your Vital Signs” to improve safety on the road. Motorists are urged to obey the speed limit and stop for pedestrians in crosswalks. Pedestrians are told to use crosswalks and wait for the walk signal where applicable.
A new “Heads Up, Phone Down” message has been added to the campaign this year to combat distracted driving and walking.
Businesses, organizations and individuals interested in helping to promote the Street Smart NJ message in Lakewood should contact Sarah Kay at 732-364-2500 Ext. 2771 or firstname.lastname@example.org. To learn more about the campaign, visit bestreetsmartnj.org. The campaign is also on Facebook (StreetSmartNJ) and Twitter (@njstreetsmart).