(TRENTON) — Legislation sponsored by Assemblyman Nelson Albano to ensure the timely notification to family members that a relative has been seriously injured in an accident was released Thursday by an Assembly committee.
The bill (A-1812) would require the responding law enforcement officer or other officer investigating a motor vehicle accident to notify the next of kin of the whereabouts of an accident victim who has been transported to the emergency room of a medical facility when that victim is unconscious or otherwise unable to communicate this information.
The officer is required to make this notification as soon as possible.
Notifying the next of kin of a person who has been admitted to an emergency room as a result of a motor vehicle accident is usually done by hospital staff.
“It’s our belief that the law enforcement officer who responds to the accident scene or is investigating the accident is in a better position than hospital staff to notify in a timely manner the next of kin of the victim’s whereabouts when the victim is unable to do so,” Albano said. “The goal here is to simply make sure that notification is done in as timely and proper way as possible for the benefit of both the victim and the family.”
Albano’s son Michael was killed in 2001 by a repeat drunk driver.
The bill was unanimously released by the Assembly Law and Public Safety Committee.
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