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news release

P.O. Box 600
Trenton, NJ

Contact: Erin Phalon or Tim Greeley

RELEASE: November 21, 2007

NJDOT activates Overheight Vehicle Detection Systems at three locations

Electronic system prevents trucks from damaging railroad bridges

(Trenton) - The New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) today announced the activation of three Overheight Vehicle Detection Systems (OVDS), which detect the approach of trucks that are too tall to fit beneath a bridge and warn drivers to avoid the bridge. The systems are located on Amtrak-owned bridges in Edison, Elizabeth and Linden that carry NJ TRANSIT trains on the Northeast Corridor and North Jersey Coast Line.

“The installation of Overheight Vehicle Detection Systems in Edison, Elizabeth, Linden and Red Bank will protect the State’s transportation infrastructure and improve the safety of motorists and rail passengers,” said NJDOT Commissioner Kris Kolluri.

NJDOT activated OVDS at the Parsonage Road Bridge in Edison, Middlesex County; Wood Avenue Bridge in Elizabeth, Union County; and the North Avenue Bridge in Linden, Union County. NJDOT will activate a fourth OVDS located at West Front Street Bridge in Red Bank and Middletown, Monmouth County in late November.

Each of these bridges is too low to accommodate truck traffic. Drivers of overheight vehicles sometimes fail to heed static warning signs regarding low under-clearance and hit bridge structures as a result. This damages bridge structures and creates hazardous conditions for vehicular traffic and causes train delays due to speed restrictions. More than 60,000 NJ TRANSIT customers travel over these bridges each weekday.

The electronic OVDS system uses an infrared device to detect the height of oncoming vehicles. When a truck is too tall to fit beneath a bridge, it alerts the driver by activating an audible alarm as well as warning lights on an electronic display board. The warning is provided in advance in order to allow drivers to choose an alternate route without reversing their truck and thereby disrupting traffic.

NJ TRANSIT will operate and maintain the OVDS.

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  Last Updated:  July 14, 2011