April 16, 2012 BUCCO TO INTRODUCE LEGISLATION INCREASING PENALTIES FOR CARELESS DRIVING Deputy Assembly Republican Leader Anthony M. Bucco, R-Morris and Somerset, announced he is drafting legislation that will increase the punishment for drivers who act carelessly or inattentively where school crossing guards are posted. On Feb. 29, the Bergen Record reported on a Cresskill crossing guard who was hit by a car on Feb. 10.  The driver was issued a summons and will pay a relatively small fine ($50 to $200) and possibly incur points against his driver’s license. The story also detailed that traffic officials are recording higher incidences of accidents involving school crossing guards. State data shows that between 1993 and 2008, 14 New Jersey crossing guards were killed by vehicles while working. An additional 121 were seriously hurt during that time. “Traffic safety, especially where students, crossing guards and school buses are concerned, is vitally important,” said Bucco. “Drivers need to pay the utmost attention when in the vicinity of pedestrians, including crossing guards. The increasing incidence of accidents involving them shows how perilous their job can be. We need to strengthen the law if a driver hits a crossing guard during the course of their work. An automatic suspension of one’s driver’s license should send a clear message that extreme caution is mandated where school children and crossing guards are present.”