(TRENTON) – In an effort to further recognize the importance of county and deputy county fire coordinators, Assemblymen Bob Andrzejcak and Bruce Land have sponsored legislation authorizing these individuals to operate emergency warning lights if certain conditions are met. This bill was advanced through the Assembly Law and Public Safety Committee Monday.
“It is incredibly important to give these courageous people the credit and recognition they deserve,” said Andrzejcak (D-Atlantic/Cape May/Cumberland.) “County and deputy county fire coordinators are often some of the first responders to a fire and providing them with lights will allow them to better do their jobs and respond even more quickly than they currently do.”
“By providing county and deputy county fire coordinators with emergency warning lights, other drivers on the road will allow them to pass, allowing these coordinators to be even more proficient than they already are,” said Land (D-Atlantic/Cape May/Cumberland). “We ought to give the proper recognition to these individuals for the crucial job they do.”
According to the bill (A-3199), a county or deputy county fire coordinator would be able to mount an operate any emergency warning light, regardless of color, so long as the Chief Administrator of the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission prepares and signs suitable identification cards upon the request of the County Executive or Director of the Board of Chosen Freeholders.
The cards would then be countersigned and issued by the County Executive or Director of the Board of Chosen Freeholders and distributed to the county or deputy county fire coordinators.
Prior to the issuance of these identification cards, however, no emergency warning lights may be mounted.
Under current law, blue emergency lights may be operated by a volunteer fire company, volunteer first aid or rescue squad, or by a county or municipal volunteer of the Office of Emergency Management whose official duties include responding to a fire or emergency call. Red emergency warning lights may currently be operated by a chief or first assistant chief of a volunteer fire company.
The bill will now go to the Assembly Speaker for further consideration.