Improper operating of vehicle on divided highway or divider (N.J.S.A. 39:4-82.1)
Driving on or across a safety island or any other physical barrier on a divided roadway is illegal. In the state of New Jersey, you can get a ticket pursuant to N.J.S.A. 39:4-82.1. In this article, New Jersey traffic ticket lawyer Dan T. Matrafajlo will explain what the law is and what it can mean for you.
The law: N.J.S.A. 39:4:82.1
The relevant New Jersey law is N.J.S.A. 39:4-82.1, which says:
“Whenever any highway has been divided into two roadways by leaving an intervening space or by a physical barrier or clearly indicated dividing section so constructed so as to impede vehicular traffic, every vehicle shall be driven only upon the right-hand roadway and no vehicle shall be driven over, across or within any such dividing space, barrier or section, except through an appropriate opening in such physical barrier or dividing section or space or at a cross over or intersection established by public authority.”
MVC points and penalties
The New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission (MVC) will add two points to your driving record for this traffic violation. If at any time you have six or more points on your record, you’ll be subject to a surcharge. If you have 12 or more points, the MVC will suspend your license. (Keep in mind that the judge in the municipal court also has the discretion to suspend your license for willful violation of the law against driving on a safety island.)
The traffic ticket fine for driving on a safety island is $85. However, if you commit this motor vehicle violation in a designated safe corridor, construction zone, or 65-mile-per-hour zone, the fine increases to $140.
In addition, the court can fine you anywhere between $50 and $200 and/or imprison you in state prison for up to 15 days.
You won’t only face penalties from the MVC and the court, however; New Jersey-licensed automobile insurance providers also keep track of your driving record. If you commit a traffic violation by driving on a safety island, you’ll get two “insurance eligibility points”—this can result in a higher insurance premium payment. If you get seven or more points, you will no longer be able to purchase insurance through the voluntary market. Instead, you’ll have to purchase at-risk coverage through the New Jersey Personal Automobile Insurance Plan (NJPAIP), which is more expensive.