Seaside St. Patrick’s Safety Score – 0 fatalities, 94 summonses
The concerted traffic-safety push in, and near, Seaside Heights during March's Saint Patrick's Day festivities produce no serious crashes - and a sizable number of traffic tickets, arrests and calls for police response, according to data from the Ocean County Prosecutor's Office.
Eighteen municipal, county and state agencies tied to law enforcement and roads either sent, or approved, patrols on Route 35, between Point Pleasant Beach and Seaside Park, and Route 37, from Seaside Heights to Manchester, on March 11. The effect was a highly-visible warning for drivers to mind their traffic behavior.
A cursory look at the figures reveals a subtext of why streets and highways become unsafe during such large-scale gatherings.
Officers stopped 277 vehicles. Ninety-four summonses were written out, all told, In addition to four DUI arrests, one individual was charged with refusing to comply with field sobriety testing. One was cited for having an open container of alcohol in the car. There were three traffic-signal violations and three drug infractions.
Twelve drivers were cited for failing to wear seat restraints - and, significantly, no tickets were handed out for failing to keep children buckled up. There were two speeders and 15 citations for equipment failures. Moving and non-moving violations registered 36 each.
Three people were arrested for active warrants, two for aggravated assault, and one on a disorderly-persons misdemeanor. Police reported three active fights.
Patrol officers logged 223-and-a-half hours of overtime, covered by agrant from the New Jersey Division of Highway TRaffic Safety.
In addition ot the Division of Highway Traffic Safety and New Jersey State Police and the state Department of Transportation, municipalities and agencies involved in the initative include: Bay Head, Berkeley Township, Brick Township, Lakehurst, Lavallette, Manchester, Mantoloking, Seaside Heights, Seaside Park, and Toms River; and the Ocean County Prosecutor's Office, Sheriff's Department, and Road and Engineering Departments.