May 24, 2016
On May 23rd, 2016 a Westwood Police Officer was on motor patrol near the area of Washington Avenue and Broadway. The Officer observed a grey Mazda make an illegal right turn on red at the traffic signal. They initiated a motor vehicle stop and approached the vehicle which contained five occupants. The Officer made contact with the male operator, Morlin Enrique Vindel-Medina (20) from Wilkes Barre, PA and detected a strong odor of marijuana emanating from the vehicle. The Officer removed the driver and the four remaining male passengers from the vehicle. A subsequent search of the vehicle yielded a quantity of marijuana inside a clear bag as well as two handguns, one of which was loaded with hollow point ammunition, as well as a gas operated pistol. Read the rest of this entry »
April 01, 2016
Distracted driving is a dangerous epidemic on New Jersey’s roadways. Driver inattention has been a major contributing factor in nearly 800,000 motor vehicle crashes in the state from 2010 to 2014 and nationwide, 3,179 were killed in distracted driving crashes in 2014 alone. To combat these troubling statistics, during the month of April, law enforcement agencies including the Westwood Police Deparment throughout New Jersey will be using a combination of traditional and innovative strategies to crack down on motorists who text and drive. This effort is a part of the national U Drive. U Text. U Pay high-visibility enforcement (HVE) campaign that combines periods of intense anti-texting enforcement coupled with advertising and media outreach to let people know about the enforcement and convince them to obey the law.
U Drive. U Text. U Pay enforcement strategies include roving police patrols, spotters on highway overpasses, and stationary police vehicles prominently placed at strategic locations. Historically, the most effective tool used to change driver behavior are targeted law enforcement campaigns, like Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over and Click It or Ticket. Since their inception, these two initiatives have resulted in significant reductions in impaired driving and gains in seat belt usage, respectively.
Distracted driving is any activity that could divert a person’s attention away from the primary task of driving. All distractions endanger driver, passenger, and bystander safety. But, because text messaging requires visual, manual, and cognitive attention from the driver, it is by far the most alarming distraction.
Summertime and the end-of-year holidays are when most Americans gather to enjoy their free time with friends and family. They are also some of the most deadly times on American roads due to impaired driving. That’s why during the summer and the end of the year, a nationwide campaign comprised of thousands of traffic safety partners including the Westwood Police Department, join together to protect citizens from this deadly crime.