Bridge Commission Police Enforce Crackdown on Drunk Drivers as Part of Statewide Campaign
Law enforcement officers from the Burlington County Bridge Commission will be cracking down on drunk drivers as part of the summer 2012 “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign funded by a state grant program. Beginning August 17 and running through September 3, Commission police will join local and state law enforcement officers conducting sobriety checkpoints and roving patrols, looking for motorists who may be driving while intoxicated.
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A concentrated national effort, the campaign helps to raise awareness about the dangers of drinking and driving through high-visibility enforcement and public education tools, including posters, banners and mobile video display signs. Launched nationally in 1999, the program works to combat drunk driving during some of the busiest travel times of the year, including the Labor Day holiday period.
In 2010 alcohol-impaired fatalities accounted for 20 percent of New Jersey’s motor vehicle fatalities. As part of the initiative, the Division of Highway Traffic Safety provides grants to local law enforcement agencies throughout the state to run the two-week campaign. The Bridge Commission will use grant funds to cover overtime DUI patrols.
Law enforcement agencies participating in the Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over 2012 crackdown offer the following advice:
• If you plan to drink, designate a driver, someone who will not drink alcohol, before going out.
• Take mass transit, a taxi or ask a sober friend to drive you home.
• Spend the night where the activity is held.
• Report impaired drivers to law enforcement. In New Jersey, drivers may dial #77 to report a drunk or aggressive driver.
• Always buckle up, for every ride, regardless of your seating position in the vehicle. It’s your best defense against an impaired driver.
• If you’re intoxicated and traveling on foot, the safest way to get home is to take a cab or have a sober friend or family member drive you to your doorstep.
Riverside-Delanco Bridge to Get New Concrete Deck Equipped With “Smart Technology”
Overnight Closures Minimal
The Burlington County Bridge Commission has begun work on the Riverside-Delanco Bridge that will extend through November, ultimately replacing the swing span’s concrete bridge deck with one equipped with “smart technology.” The 77-year-old bridge’s new concrete deck will contain sensors that will monitor bridge conditions, enable proactive maintenance, and thus extend the life of the bridge.
“We’ve already seen proof that embedding sensors in our bridge decks makes our bridges safer and more efficient,” said John Comegno, Chairman of the Burlington County Bridge Commission, referring to smart technology sensors already installed on the Commission’s larger landmark bridges, the Tacony-Palmyra and Burlington-Bristol Bridges.
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Sensors in the new concrete deck will enable Commission engineers to monitor the characteristics of the reinforcing steel that is embedded inside the concrete deck. Normally there is no way to physically inspect the reinforcing steel since it is buried in concrete, but with these new sensors the Commission can monitor the moisture level and salt content, which are two main causes of steel corrosion in bridge decks.
“By monitoring the steel that reinforces the concrete deck, our engineers and maintenance staff can take appropriate corrective action early in the corrosion process and thereby extend the life of the concrete deck,” added Vice-Chairman James D. Fattorini.
Commissioners instructed the engineers on the project to schedule the work with as little disruption as possible to local residents who use the Riverside-Delanco Bridge. As a result, the bridge will only be closed for a total of twelve hours for this project. Closures (two 6-hour periods) are scheduled during overnight hours to lessen the impact to the motoring public. The bridge will be closed to traffic from Monday, August 20th at 11 PM to Tuesday, August 21 at 5 AM, and from Tuesday, August 21 at 11 PM to Wednesday, August 22 at 5 AM.
Bridge Commission Police will be on site to assist and direct traffic to alternate routes. In the event of an emergency, the construction activity could be stopped and the bridge reopened in approximately ten minutes.
A swing span bridge turns on a vertical axis to allow river traffic to pass. It is balanced on a support called a “pivot pier,” which is located at the bridge’s center.
Learn How to Create A Pollinator Garden at PCNP
Working naturalist and backyard habitat champion Pat Sutton will teach basic “how-tos” for creating a pollinator-friendly garden and yard for butterflies, hummingbirds, bees and more at this program to be held Saturday, September 1st (10 AM - 12 noon). The “How to Create a Pollinator Garden For Butterflies, Hummingbirds, Moths, Bees, and More!” program is followed by a garden tour and book signing.
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You’ll discover which plants attract pollinators from April through October and learn about the natural history of pollinators. After the program, Pat will join Ward Dasey for a walk through the award-winning nectar gardens he created at PCNP.
Pat Sutton studied the natural world for over 30 years, first as the naturalist at the Cape May Point State Park and then as the naturalist and program director at the Cape May Bird Observatory. She and her husband, Clay Sutton, wrote the landmark book, Birds and Birding at Cape May, as well as How to Spot Butterflies, How to Spot Hawks & Eagles, and How to Spot an Owl (www.patandclaysutton.com).
Cost is $10.00 per person, FREE to PCNP members. Adults only. Register by 8/24/12; seating is limited. Call (856) 829 - 1900 ext. 270.