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Cops Step up Enforcement During Pedestrian Safety Month

Starting last week and continuing into September, Fair Lawn police officers on day tour will increase enforcement of pedestrian and driver safety violations.

For the next month, police officers -- who are stepping up their enforcement of traffic safety -- plan to hit motorists with all the tricks in the pedestrian safety playbook.

"It’s going to be marked units, unmarked units, we’re even going to do some sting operations where we have somebody crossing the street to see if vehicles will stop," said Lt. Derek Bastinck, who is spearheading the pedestrian safety initiative that started last week and will run through September.

Since focusing their enforcement efforts one week ago,  have already written 23 moving violations and made about three times that number of motor vehicle stops, Bastinck said.

Cops are focusing both on drivers on their cell phones and drivers who fail to yield to pedestrians at crosswalks, as well as pedestrians who cross against the signal or in the middle of the street rather than at a nearby crosswalk.

In some cases, police will even use a spotter to stand on a street corner and radio over seatbelt and cell phone violations to police cars waiting further down the road.

As always, it will be up to an officer's discretion whether a violation is ticket-worthy, but Bastinck advised that motorists and pedestrians exercise additional caution for the next month.

"Officers are going to be a little more stern about violations in the crosswalks during this enforcement period," he said.

Officers that are focusing on traffic safety this month are typically out assisting patrol units with other calls, Bastinck said. 

"We have what we call directed patrol," he explained. "An officer on directed patrol is not always given a specific assignment, but this month our specific focus is going to be pedestrian safety."

In addition to focusing on traffic safety, directed officers will continue high visibility patrols of busy areas in town including , , both and the River Road and Radburn business districts.

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Arnold Spier August 19, 2012 at 11:56 AM
It is about time. As someone who tries to cross Fair Lawn Ave and Saddle River Rd on Friday nights and Saturday it is very dangerous.
Tommy August 19, 2012 at 01:31 PM
Sounds like a shakedown to me. I guess the message about increasing court receipts is taken hold.
cutspending August 19, 2012 at 02:20 PM
It is about time. As someone who tries to drive on any street at any time, the pedestrians cross in the middle of the streets and against the light more often than not. I say ticket them all because they are dangers to themselves!
Deleted because of harassment August 19, 2012 at 08:08 PM
Bergen Ave. @ River Road. Drivers going southbound at the curve will plow you down in an instant and almost no one stops, ever. And feel free to ticket all the idiots that can't walk to the corner between George Street and River Road - they dart out of the Chase lot and back without ever a moments hesitation even though there are safer places to cross within feet. . Maybe they can even get the traffic signal at FL Ave and River for pedestrians to work for more than a week at a time so they can obey the signal and not have to guess if it is safe to cross. And then there is Maple at Henderson, which has needed a light now for three decades, and where NO one stops or even signals unless they are turning left into Pathmark. And then, they only slow down if they have to.
Me August 20, 2012 at 01:27 PM
I think the biggest target will be the crosswalk on Broadway near the train stop. When the pedestrian light blinks yellow, does that mean to stop? Nobody knows!! Then cars that do stop, get rammed from behind from motorist that can't see the stopped car because the road dips.
JustMyOpinion August 20, 2012 at 02:19 PM
I believe that the pedestrians need to be more accountable for their actions. I can't believe how many times I have been traveling down the road only to see a pedestrian walk across the intersection without stopping. What happened to stop, look both ways and then proceed if there are no cars coming that we were all taught as children. Instead, I have to slam on my brakes because some pedestrian thinks I can stop a 3,000 lb. piece of steel on a dime. Ticket them!
Ken V September 10, 2012 at 08:19 PM
Try crossing the street in the lines next to the pedestrians signs to cross Fair Lawn Avenue to the Library. Signs are up, it's in front of the police station, and no one EVER stops....

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