NJDOT kicks off July 4th weekend with safety announcements
(Trenton) – The New Jersey Department of Transportation’s (NJDOT) today kicked off July 4th weekend by highlighting new traffic technology, reiterating the importance of highway safety and encouraging motorists to exercise caution as they travel to their holiday destinations.
"As the summer season swings into full gear here in New Jersey, NJDOT is promoting safety by suspending construction on all state highways, expanding the hours of our Emergency Service Patrols throughout the state, and urging drivers to obey all speed and safety signs,” Governor Jon S. Corzine said. “In addition, I encourage motorists to dial 511 to access the State’s new voice-activated traffic information system and to also check out our new real-time traffic website, www.NJ511.info.”
NJDOT announced the following statewide highway safety initiatives:
· NJDOT will extend the hours of operation of the Statewide Emergency Service Patrols (ESP) over the holiday weekend. ESP helps stranded drivers with extra gas, tire changes and other services.
· NJDOT will suspend all construction on state highways from 6 a.m. Thursday, July 3, until noon Tuesday, July 8.
· The new, state-of-the-art Statewide Traffic Management Center enables the NJDOT, the New Jersey Turnpike Authority and the New Jersey State Police to improve their management of and response to accidents, adverse weather, special events and congestion. The 26,000 square foot facility operates 24 hours per day, seven days per week.
· NJDOT recently launched its new real time traffic Web site, www.NJ511.info, which offers interactive maps and displays traffic incidents. The Google Maps-based Web site offers motorists real time traffic conditions on State highways, interstate highways, the Garden State Parkway and the New Jersey Turnpike. The Web site highlights incidents, construction, weather and special events.
· New Jersey State Police and local police departments will increase their patrols during the holiday weekend. They will be looking for drivers who are aggressive, drowsy or intoxicated. State Police will be using unmarked vehicles for traffic enforcement.
· Drivers are encouraged to dial 511 for real-time information on traffic, E-ZPass, construction and weather incidents.
· Drivers are encouraged to call the following numbers for roadside assistance or to report a disabled vehicle, roadside debris or other problems;
- On the Turnpike, call #95.
- On the Parkway, call #GSP (#477).
- On the Atlantic City Expressway, call #ACE (#223).
- To report aggressive driving on any road, call #77.
- Motorists should continue to dial 911 for emergencies.
Calls are toll and airtime free with most major New Jersey cellular suppliers. Any motorist with a cellular phone can expedite aid to disabled vehicles by simply dialing this number. Callers should note the nearest mile marker, the direction of travel and a description of the vehicle.
· Drivers can also find updated information on all roads, 24 hours a day, at www.nj511.info and www.njcommuter.com.
Express E-ZPass is now available at eight toll plazas along the New Jersey Turnpike and the Garden State Parkway, including the Bergen Toll Plaza. Express E-ZPass allows E-ZPass customers to travel through toll areas at normal driving speeds, thanks to the removal of certain toll barriers and the addition of E-ZPass sensors on an overhead gantry. At each location, traditional E-ZPass and cash lanes are also available.
A total of 4,645,000 drivers are expected on the New Jersey Turnpike and 9,131,000 on the Garden State Parkway for the seven day period from Wednesday through Tuesday. Thursday is expected to be the most heavily traveled day, with volumes at their highest between the hours of 2:00 pm and 8:00 pm. On the New Jersey Turnpike, the concentration of this traffic will be experienced at Interchanges 1-4, 11, 14, 18W and just south of 8A at the merge. On the Garden State Parkway, the concentration of this traffic will be from the Union Toll Plaza through to the Toms River Toll Plaza.
NJDOT urges motorists to exercise caution while driving this summer. Traffic accidents are the leading cause of death for people between the ages of three and 33 in the United States. According to the American Automobile Association, nearly 13,000 people will die in highway crashes nationwide during the period that begins with Memorial Day weekend and ends Labor Day.