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New Jersey Puts the Brakes on Fatalities

Published: Oct 02, 2017 in Traffic Offenses

On October 10, New Jersey will honor Put the Brakes on Fatalities Day. Put the Brakes on Fatalities Day is a national program designed to promote the major causes of transportation fatalities and what can be done to prevent them. On this day, drivers are encouraged to be particularly careful so that no fatalities occur on New Jersey roads for one day.

If you have lost a loved one in a transportation fatality, you should reach out to our Jersey City vehicle accident lawyers as soon as possible. Although compensation can’t bring your loved one back, it can ease the financial burden you have been left with. Call us today at (201) 798-8000.

Transportation Fatality Statistics

In 2015, the 35,092 traffic fatalities that occurred across the country were the leading cause of death for individuals between the ages of 15 and 34. According to the New Jersey Division of Highway Safety, there were 603 individuals who passed away in motor vehicle-related accidents in 2016. Unfortunately, this number increased from 562 in 2015.

Pedestrian fatalities are especially concerning in New Jersey. The national average for pedestrian fatalities is 15 percent compared to the 27 percent that account for all motor vehicle fatalities in the state. Some of the most common causes of pedestrian fatalities include distracted driving, speeding, illegal U-turns, drunk driving, and inexperienced driving.

Additionally, speeding is one of the leading factors of fatalities in motor-vehicle related accidents. In 2015, it contributed to 27 percent of all fatal accidents in the United States. Drunk driving is another common cause of motor fatalities and accounted for 29 percent of all traffic fatalities in 2015.

Distracted Driving and the #77 Alert System

The New Jersey Division of Highway Safety stated that there has been a large increase in distracted driving fatalities over the last four years, from 58 fatalities in 2013 to 115 or almost 20 percent of all traffic deaths in 2016. Distracted driving fatalities occur when drivers talk on the phone, text, eat and drink, use social media, search for songs on their audio system, or do anything else that takes their attention away from the road and the operation of their vehicle.

In April 2017, the #77 alert system was created to reduce the amount of distracted driving fatalities that occur in the state. The #77 alert system gives New Jersey residents the opportunity to report distracted driving. By simply dialing #77, a resident can report a distracted driver to the New Jersey State Police Regional Operations and Intelligence Center’s Call Room who will forward their phone call to the nearest police agency.

A police officer will then respond to the call and issue a citation if they witness this behavior. In the event that license plate information is gathered, the individual who was seen engaging in distracted driving will receive a warning letter in the mail.

Any driver who is convicted of distracted driving may face fines of up to $400 for the first offense, fines of up to $600 for the second offense, and fines of up to $800, a suspended license for 90 days, and three points on their driving record for the third offense.

What to Expect on Put the Brakes on Fatalities Day

The goal of Put the Brakes on Fatalities Day is to increase safe driving awareness and keep New Jersey roads free of fatalities for one day. On the days leading up to Put the Brakes on Fatalities Day, police departments will educate the public about this day and how they can participate in it through variable message boards.

Police officers will also distribute educational materials about safe driving and hold educational events to promote this day and teach drivers how they can keep themselves as well as other drivers safe on the New Jersey roadways.

To participate in this initiative on October 10, New Jersey drivers should make it a top priority to adhere to all traffic laws, refrain from speeding, avoid driving distractions, stop for pedestrians, put on seatbelts, wear proper safety gear while riding a bicycle or motorcycle, and stay sober while operating a motor vehicle. If every driver practices extra vigilance while behind the wheel on this day, the state’s roadways will be fatality free.

Hopefully, one fatality free day will encourage good driving behaviors throughout the year and reduce the amount of fatalities that arise as a result of motor vehicle accidents in New Jersey.

Contact Bhatt Law Group

This October 10, be sure to do your part on Put the Brakes on Fatalities Day by being particularly careful while on the road. If you have lost a loved one in a traffic vehicle accident that was caused by another person’s negligence, it is in your best interest to contact our Jersey City vehicle accident lawyers at (201) 798-8000. We may be able to help you secure compensation so that you don’t have to face financial stress throughout the grieving process.