West Windsor Township is a high volume area for both vehicular and pedestrian traffic. We have 27,165 residents, plus we have major highways, such as Route 1, and county routes 571, 533 and 535, traversing the almost 27 square miles of our township. We are home to the second busiest train station in the state; have two major shopping malls and we have five public schools serving over 5,000 students.
West Windsor places a high priority on pedestrian safety. The township has received multiple grants over the years for roadway improvements related to pedestrian safety.
Even with the safety improvements that have been made, the township continues to receive a high number of complaints about pedestrian related violations from the motoring public. The township police department has made attempts to enforce violations throughout the town, but due to manpower constraints and budgetary issues, we are not always able to be as proactive as we would like to be.
In the past three years West Windsor has had 24 pedestrian involved motor vehicle collisions. The Highway Traffic Safety State Pedestrian Safety Enforcement and Education Fund Grant will be used for targeted enforcement in the highest complaint/collision areas. The goals will be to reduce pedestrian involved collisions; reduce pedestrian involved motor vehicle violations and educate the public as to the pedestrian motor vehicle laws.
At least two officers will work the enforcement detail. The officers will set up enforcement in high problem areas and areas we have had the greatest number of complaints. A plain clothes officer will act as a pedestrian in the high problem area. The other uniformed officer will take enforcement action against violators.
The officer will also give the driver an information brochure relating to the current applicable Title 39 pedestrian laws. This targeted enforcement and education will result in a reduction in pedestrian related motor vehicle collisions. We feel that this approach is forward thinking and addresses our “hot zones” for pedestrian safety.
We ask you take a moment to complete the following survey as it relates to our efforts as part of this program. We appreciate your time in doing so (Go online to goo.gl/tQNqus).
The enforcement and education program will run in September and October of this year. We started the program on the first day of school year and will conclude the program on Halloween. We will be working collectively with the Greater Mercer TMA at some of the locations as they conduct a “Street Smart Campaign.”
Police Chief Robert Garofalo stated, “The West Windsor Township Police Department is always striving to make our community safer. By partnering up with other stakeholders, we can maximize our efforts to address some of the more challenging areas for pedestrians and bicyclists. Traffic Sgt. Frank Bal did an excellent job of teaming up with the GreaterMercer TMA in order to attain an efficient and focused approach.”
If you would like additional information on this initiative, feel free to contact Sgt. Bal at firstname.lastname@example.org or (609) 799-1222.
— Lt. Mark Lee
Lee is the public information officer for the West Windsor Police Department.