Driver injures New Jersey Police Officer in blatant defiance of State’s Move Over Law
The "Move Over Law" has been in affect in New Jersey now for about a decade following the tragic death of New Jersey State Police Trooper Marc Castellano who was killed by a speeding driver who failed to move over in 2010 on I-195.
There is good indication the law has helped but there are still many drivers who refuse to move over or can't because someone else is blocking them from doing so.
Many police officers have been fortunate when they've been hit or their vehicle has been hit in recent years by drivers -- under the influence or completely sober -- not paying any attention or having and consideration.
One example was in 2017 when Manchester Police Officer Kyle Rickvalsky had pulled over to investigate an accident where a car and deer collided when a swerving car came within inches of hitting the patrolman.
Several months later, in 2018, four Manchester Police Officers were injured when a drunk driver struck the officers and their vehicles on the side of the road. It just so happened that the next day, Governor Phil Murphy dedicated a section of I-195 to Trooper Castellano.
In January of 2020, an Ocean Township (Monmouth County) Police Officer was injured when a vehicle sideswiped his patrol car and took off.
Right after that, a Brick Township Police Officer narrowly avoided being injured after a car crashed into his police cruiser along Route 70.
In short, when you see a police vehicle, tow truck vehicle lit up, fire truck, or other emergency vehicle off on the side of a road -- move over to another lane and do so before heading towards where that vehicle is located.
The Move Over Law is designed to prevent accidents of all kinds and tragedies.
There's even been discussions in recent years about hefty penalties against repeat offenders being drivers who continually ignore this law and get into multiple accidents and collisions.
There was an extension of the bill that passed into law in early 2020.
The Ocean County Prosecutor's Office is among those who've had a focus on preventing these accidents as well.
On Sunday evening in Atlantic City this week Police Officer Joseph Kelly Jr. was hit by a pickup driver as he was conducting traffic control at the scene of an accident along Route 30 around 10:46 pm.
Atlantic City Police said in a statement that a car had gone off-road and into the marsh area prompting their response along with the Atlantic City Fire Department.
Officer Kelly was doing his job part of which that night included setting up road flares when suddenly a wanted man out of Ocean County struck the officer with his 2016 Dodge Ram pickup truck leading to Officer Kelly being thrown to the side of the road.
He was brought to AtlantiCare Regional Medical Center for treatment of his injuries.
Police said that 46-year-old Peter Kwiatkowski of Manahawkin did remain at the scene after the collision.
When police saw that Kwiatkowski had multiple outstanding warrants out for his arrest in Ocean County, he was arrested for those and issued several motor vehicle summonses including Failure to Yield to Emergency Vehicles and Reckless Driving.