Manasquan Police Cracking Down on Bike Safety Laws
Summonses will be issued for youths without helmets, bikes without lights, officials say
Manasquan officials are warning bicyclists to follow all traffic and safety laws or face the consequences.
Police are planning to crack down on bicyclists without lights on their bikes or youths not wearing helmets, as well as other rules of the road, after a 16-year-old girl last weekend miraculously avoided serious injury after being struck by a car while riding her bike on Route 71, Councilman Owen McCarthy said.
Anyone caught by police breaking bicycle laws will first be issued a written or verbal warning, but anyone stopped a second time will be issued a summons, said McCarthy, chairman of the borough's Public Safety Committee.
"It's an issue that the police department will take seriously going forward," McCarthy said. "It will start with warnings but unfortunately it will lead to violations and summonses being issues."
McCarthy during his Monday committee report asked parents of youngsters to ensure their children wear a helmet whenever they ride their bike.
According to the state Division of Highway Traffic Safety (HTS), head injuries are the most serious injury type and the most common cause of death among bicyclists.
Anyone under the age of 17 must wear a helmet, the HTS says.
"This is an issue that we have to take seriously," McCarthy said.
In New Jersey, all bicycles have the same rights and responsibilities as motor vehicles, according to the HTS.
That means bicyclists must obey all traffic laws, such as riding on the right-hand side of the road, obeying all traffic signals, traveling no more than two abreast when traffic is not impeded, and riding with traffic, the HRS says.