January is a time to reflect on the past year and prioritize our goals for the next twelve months. For the Division of Highway Traffic Safety (DHTS), a top priority in 2022 is gaining the public’s help in reversing a troubling trend – the upward rise of traffic fatalities in our state.
Each year, the Division administers and distributes tens of millions of federally allocated dollars in the pursuit of safety for every person who travels on New Jersey roadways.
Despite our best efforts, however, traffic fatalities in New Jersey are on the rise. After a two-year decline, 2020 brought a 5.8 percent increase in traffic fatalities. As was recently reported in the news, in 2021, the number of traffic deaths rose 17.5 percent to 690, the highest number of fatalities New Jersey has seen in more than a decade.
The dedicated professionals in DHTS and the NJ Department of Transportation are working together – in collaboration with traffic safety partners across the state – to bring these numbers down.
But the fact remains, that no amount of roadway engineering, traffic enforcement, or public education could ever be more effective in preventing traffic deaths than if we all simply drove as if we valued and respected the lives of one another.
So as we begin a new year, let’s take a fresh approach to the way we drive in New Jersey. In 2022, let’s start driving as if the strangers in the cars around us are our friends and loved ones and do all we can to protect their safety. Let’s leave for our destination a few minutes earlier so we don’t have to speed; let’s put the cell phone on “do not disturb” so we’re not distracted behind the wheel, let’s start driving in a way that values the lives of everyone on the road.
I invite everyone to contact our office via phone (609) 633-9300 or email HTSWebInfo@njoag.gov with questions, comments, or suggestions. You can also follow along with the NJ DHTS on social media to join the #StickToIt and #TakeControlOfYourDestiny discussions and other traffic safety conversations.
- Facebook – @NewJerseyDivisionofHighwayTrafficSafety
- Twitter – @NJTrafficSafety
- Instagram- @NJTrafficSafety,
For a wealth of information on a wide array of traffic safety topics, please visit the Division’s frequently updated web site at www.NJSafeRoads.com.
Please stay safe and be considerate on the highways this year.