29 Ticketed in 4 Hours for Crosswalk, Phone Violations
Traffic enforcement detail Wednesday also resulted in 30 warnings to motorists.
Lt. Brian Gibbons of the Chatham Borough Police Department said the traffic enforcement detail Wednesday resulted in 29 summonses and 30 warnings for motorists.
The special detail began at about 7:30 a.m. Wednesday and lasted about four hours.
Police Sgt. Jayson Cittrich organized the enforcement detail and put the unit together for the Wednesday morning hours. "He recognized that it's good timing, before school starts," Gibbons said.
The detail included seven members of the police department, including Gibbons, Cittrich and Traffic Safety Officer Robert Sweetin.
"We did crosswalk enforcement for the first two hours," Gibbons said. "In that time we gave out 21 warnings and eight summonses."
Several summonses were for violations other than crosswalk violations, including expired registrations.
"Right now we're not strictly enforcing this because it recently changed," Gibbons said. Previously, drivers were only required to yield to pedestrians crossing.
According to the New Jersey Driver Manual, "A motorist must stop and stay stopped for a pedestrian crossing the roadway within a marked crosswalk or within any unmarked crosswalk at an intersection."
The manual continues, "In most cases, pedestrians have the right of way at all intersections," whether the intersection has a marked or an unmarked crosswalk.
Pedestrians are responsible for timing their crossing for a time when any oncoming vehicle can stop safely.
During the second half of the enforcement, police targeted motorists who used their mobile phones while driving.
"We gave out nine warnings and 21 summonses," Gibbons said, 17 of which were for using a hand-held cell phone while driving. The other four were for careless driving, unregistered or uninspectected vehicles, unlicensed drivers and having a cracked windshield.
Cell phone drivers have "been a real problem in town," according to Gibbons. "We have zero tolerance for. People know about that law."
Police stopped a total of 52 cars throughout the duration of the detail.
Similar specialized enforcement details will be held by police over the coming months.