In August, 2010, the Christie administration did away with mandatory motor vehicle safety inspections in New Jersey. Since then, New Jersey residents are only required to have emissions inspections performed once every two years when a car is five years old. Some drivers may believe that the absence of safety inspections allows them to get away with not properly maintaining their vehicles; however, many are finding out the hard way that they can still be held accountable for failure to maintain vehicle safety standards. Court records indicate that the number of tickets issued for vehicle safety violations in New Jersey has risen dramatically since 2009.
The number of drivers ticketed in New Jersey for cracked and broken windshields increased by 39% from 2009 to 2013. Police issued almost 100,000 tickets for cars with poorly maintained lights in 2014, an increase of 13.7% from 2009. The number of drivers ticketed for faulty tires, obstructed windshields, and faulty mirrors has also risen significantly since the cessation of state mandated safety inspections.
Gary Poedubicky, director of the New Jersey Division of Highway Traffic Safety, claims that no explicit orders were given directing police to increase enforcement after the safety inspections stopped; however, Tim Franco, a Fair Lawn police officer and president of the New Jersey Police Traffic Officers Association, says that most police officers are aware that they need to be more vigilant about safety violations now.
Decline in Car Accidents in Absence of Safety Inspections
Although many safety advocates were initially concerned that New Jersey car accidents and injuries would increase without mandated safety inspections, the numbers of car crashes, accident fatalities, and accident injuries have actually declined since 2009. Poedubicky believes that the decrease in car accidents may be attributed to the increase in tickets issued for safety violations.
Broken windshields, faulty brakes, broken lights, and other mechanical problems can easily lead to car accidents that could have been prevented with proper vehicle maintenance. Although New Jersey no longer requires that vehicles pass safety inspections, drivers are still legally responsible for properly maintaining their cars in accordance with vehicle safety standards. Drivers who fail to properly maintain their cars are putting the safety of passengers, pedestrians, and other drivers at risk. They can and should be held accountable.
Cherry Hill Car Accident Lawyers at DiTomaso Law Help Accident Victims Recover Damages for Injuries
If you or a loved one was injured in a car accident caused by an unsafe vehicle, you may be entitled to significant compensation from the liable driver. Cherry Hill car accident lawyers at DiTomaso Law have extensive experience representing people in car accident claims in New Jersey. Our highly skilled South Jersey personal injury lawyers have won substantial verdicts and settlements for clients injured in car accidents. Contact DiTomaso Law online or call 856-414-0010 to schedule a free consultation with one of our top South Jersey car accident lawyers.
We serve clients throughout South Jersey and Southeastern Pennsylvania in Cherry Hill, Mount Holly, Camden County and Philadelphia.