Issue 469 August 9, 2004

NJ Clears Traffic Calming Roadblocks

Legislation that makes it easier for municipalities to build speed humps on dangerous streets without a lengthy approval process from the state Department of Transportation (DOT) was signed into law by Governor McGreevey in July. The legislation also requires the DOT to design statewide standards for speed hump construction.

The bill (A. 2161) was introduced by Assemblyman Robert Diegnan and merged with similar legislation written by Assemblywoman Linda Stender before it left the Assembly Transportation Committee. A. 2161 was then passed by the Assembly and Senate, with near unanimous support, before the summer recess and signed by the governor last month.

This legislationís passage comes on the heels of a report in the American Journal of Public Health (MTR 456, Traffic Calming Works) showing that Speed hump installations are associated with a 53%-60% reduction in a childís chances of being hurt or killed by a vehicle.

Being hit by a vehicle is the leading cause of death among U.S. children ages 5 to 14. For the past 20 years, boys and lower income children are the most likely to be involved in such accidents. It is now up to municipalities to identify the most dangerous streets in their borders and install the appropriate traffic calming devices to insure their childrenís safety.


MTR #469 portable document format (PDF) file version
(requires Adobe Acrobat).


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