Law enforcement agencies will step up their patrols along Ocean County Route 528 for the remainder of June in an attempt to curb the number of motor vehicle accidents that have been occurring on the major thoroughfare.
On June 16, the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office announced details of the Summer 2016 Safety/Enforcement Initiative, which aims to reduce the number of fatal and serious accidents, narcotics and alcohol arrests, and major moving violations in the area.
From June 17-30, the prosecutor’s office will team up with the Ocean County Sheriff’s Department, the New Jersey State Police Troop C Tactical Patrol Unit, the New Jersey State Police Transportation Safety Bureau, the state Office of Highway Traffic Safety, the Ocean County Road Department, the Ocean County Engineering Department, the Mantoloking Police Department, the Brick Township Police Department, the Lakewood Police Department, the Jackson Police Department and the Plumsted Police Department to increase patrols.
Law enforcement agencies in Burlington County, including the New Jersey State Police Troop C Bordentown Station, the Bordentown Police Department, the Chesterfield Police Department and the North Hanover Police Department have also agreed to increase their presence along the road, according to a press release.
The initiative in Ocean County will be in effect along 26 miles of Route 528, crossing through Mantoloking, Brick Township, Lakewood, Jackson and Plumsted.
“I have called upon all departments having jurisdiction in the area to do their part in alleviating these concerns and resolving potential safety issues,” Prosecutor Joseph Coronato said.
According to the prosecutor’s office, of the 484 accidents that have occurred on Route 528 between 2012-15, there have been 132 motor vehicle accidents in Jackson and 22 motor vehicle accidents in Plumsted.
“Ocean County law enforcement must be proactive in our efforts to keep motorists safe,” Coronato said. “A review of … statistics and a rise in 2015 fatalities for Route 528, added to the huge influx of additional summer commuters on this road, calls for a prudent coordinated traffic safety response.”
Police will be on the lookout for improper passing, excessive speed, driving under the influence, aggressive driving, improper turns, failing to yield, inattentive driving, disregard of traffic signals and following too close, and commercial carrier violations such as overweight vehicles, equipment maintenance issues and brake pressure, according to authorities.
Unmarked vehicles and marked patrol cars will be used during the initiative. License plate readers and variable message signs will be deployed at strategic portions of the road, according to the press release.
Coronato said there will be an engineering aspect to the initiative as professionals look for “specific road dynamics to determine if ‘rumble strips’ or other possible safety improvements may be appropriate for portions of the road.”