Brian Latham, the Deputy Chief of the Fire Department in Edison, has been getting the what-for from local Metuchen resident Jared Hayter, who has twice been almost hit by Edison Fire personnel who drive through crosswalks and don't stop. Here are his missives and the Chief's answer:
Deputy Chief Latham:
Some person driving one of your vehicles drove through a crosswalk I was standing in trying to cross the street at Central Avenue and Midland Avenue in Metuchen with my two dogs at around noon this afternoon. I was able to take a photo as it passed that clearly shows the Edison Fire Dept seal on the side of the truck. Perhaps you and your department are not aware that under New Jersey state law all vehicles are required stop for pedestrians in a crosswalk. This intersection used to have a flashing pedestrian warning lights until our town in their infinite wisdom decided to remove the buttons rather than repair the lights. I cross at this light every day and must contend with numerous vehicles failing to obey the law and stop for pedestrians. It saddens me that even official town vehicles fail to obey traffic laws. Please be aware that I will be making an effort to document traffic violations at this intersection and publicize violations to the best of my ability.
I wish to notify you of another violation of Statute 39:4-36 (Driver to stop for pedestrian) by another member of your staff. This time, today at approximately 12:50 while crossing at the intersection of Plainfield and Central Avenues in Metuchen I was passed by a man driving a sedan marked "Menlo Park Fire Chief". Apparently, the Menlo Park Fire Chief does not recognize that a pedestrian in a crosswalk with a green light has the right of way. Since this is the second time this week that an Edison Fire Dept vehicle has failed to yield to me in an intersection, I would suggest you provide your staff with a refresher on traffic laws. Operators of emergency vehicles are not protected from their duty to drive with due regard for the safety of others.