Trenton – Legislation Senator Troy Singleton sponsored to make roadways safer for pedestrians was approved today unanimously by the Senate Transportation Committee.
The bill (S-1484), to be known as “Antwan’s Law,” would allow. The measure follows the death of 17-year-old Antwan Timbers, Jr., who was struck and killed by a vehicle in May 2016 as he walked along Route 130.
“Antwan’s tragic death was a painful incident that underscores what the data on Route 130 has shown for years – that this is one of the most dangerous roads for pedestrians in our state. Whether they’re going to school or to get a slice of pizza with friends, our kids are in danger every time they cross this highway,” said Senator Singleton (D-Burlington). “This measure, championed by the students of Burlington City High School and my predecessor Senator Diane Allen, will not only be impactful in their community, but in other areas across the state where children face a similar hazard near their schools.”
Route 130 is one of the most dangerous roadways in the state for pedestrians, according to the Tri-State Transportation Campaign. The portion of Route 130 in Burlington City is in close proximity to Burlington City High School and the Wilbur Watts Intermediate School, in addition to several popular commercial entities.
The measure would reduce the speed limit on Route 130 near Burlington City High School and the Wilbur Watts Intermediate School in Burlington City. The speed limit is reduced to 25 miles per hour on the portions of Route 130 that are directly adjacent to the schools. The speed limit is reduced to 35 miles per hour on the portions of Route 130 approaching the newly reduced speed limit zone.
Currently, DOT sets speed limits for state roads, with designated exceptions for school zones. Along Route 130, for example, the speed limit is 25 mph when the presence of children is clearly visible from the roadway during recess, or while children are going to or leaving school during opening or closing hours in the area around Burlington City High School and the Wilbur Watts Intermediate School, but is otherwise 40 mph in that area.
“No student should feel like his or her life in danger while walking to and from school during the week or going to the convenience store on the weekend, but that’s the reality for many Burlington students,” said Senator Singleton. “In honor of Antwan and all those who have tragically lost their lives on Route 130, our state has a duty to make roadways safer for pedestrians.”
The bill was released from committee with a vote of 6-0, and next heads to the Senate for further consideration.