N.J. Senate Transp. Committee OKs Diegnan & Mukherji bill for statewide Vision Zero


The New Jersey Transportation Committee advanced a bill sponsored by Patrick Diegnan (D-18) and Raj Mukherji (D-33) that would effectively establish a statewide Vision Zero commission.

Twitter photo.

By John Heinis/Hudson County View

Bill S-361 would establish the “New Jersey Target Zero Commission” with the goal of eliminating all traffic fatalities and serious injuries by 2040.

The Commission would study and review all aspects of roadway safety to create an action plan with a focus on ensuring access, equity, and mobility for all road users, including pedestrians, cyclists, and motorists.

“With an increase in reckless driving and traffic fatalities following the pandemic, too many families are experiencing devastating, tragic losses that highlight the need for action,” Diegnan, who is also the chair of the Senate Transportation Committee, said in a statement.

“This will create a clear, comprehensive plan for State and local governments to save lives and protect our communities.”

The legislators pointed out that in 2022, New Jersey traffic deaths reached 706, a 15-year high. In 2021, both pedestrian and cyclist deaths hit 30-year highs, at 220 and 26, respectively.

“Roadway injuries and deaths can be drastically reduced, as demonstrated by Hoboken, which has gone seven consecutive years without a traffic-related death thanks to their effective implementation of Vision Zero,” added Mukherji, who is also the vice chair of the Senate Transportation Committee.

“Developing a comprehensive action plan to end all traffic fatalities and making our transportation infrastructure pedestrian and cyclist-friendly will save lives.”

The Commission would, among other purposes, be required to encourage the elimination of road hazards by advancing active transportation and mass transit as safe and viable forms of transportation across the state.

Building on the success and lessons learned in communities across the state, the Commission would create a comprehensive plan identifying actionable, evidence-based safety countermeasures.

The transportation committee advanced the bill unanimously (5-0), with state Senator James Holzapfel (R-10) not voting.

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