Bateman, Kean condemn federal guidance against the ‘thin blue line’

img_1466Senators Christopher “Kip” Bateman (R-Somerset, Mercer, Hunterdon, Middlesex) and Tom Kean Jr. (R-Union, Morris, Somerset) voiced their disapproval of the Federal Highway Administration’s guidance against the painting of a “Thin Blue Line” between the double-yellow center line on roadways.

“Towns paint these lines in order to honor the hardworking members of law enforcement in their own way on locally controlled roads,” Senator Bateman said. “The response from the Federal Highway Administration is an overreaction to a very important local matter. If we can’t support something as simple as the ‘thin blue line,’ what kind of message does that show to our police officers?”
Over the last several years, towns all across the state have painted the space between a double-yellow line as a sign of respect and honor to the individuals who put on a uniform to protect and serve the public.

In a letter to the Somerset County Engineer’s Office, the FHWA suggested that the “thin blue line” did not conform to its Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices for Streets and Highways because the shade of blue used to paint the lines was reserved for use on handicapped parking spots. They argued that using the paint in roadways could cause confusion.

The senators will introduce a resolution stating that New Jersey disapproves of this interpretation, and argue that municipalities should have the ability to show support for their police forces.

“Many recognize the danger police officers put themselves in,” Senator Kean said. “In many ways, it’s a thankless job, but they continue to go out for every shift to ensure the public is safe. If a town chooses to honor them for their service, they should have the ability to do so.”

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  1. can someone explain what the big fuss is about? (just for the record, i respect and support Police officers. I have attended their funerals and displayed stickers with my support).
    It doesn’t seem that anyone said not to honor or show respect to our Police officers. rather the federal traffic engineer said that it doesn’t conform to regulations and could confuse people (that are not familiar with the reason for the blue line). there are reasons why we have uniform traffic laws. Anyone that has driven cross country can attest that it makes it easier knowing that all the traffic signs and stripes are familiar, and you don’t feel like you are driving in a foreign nation. There are many ways to honor our fallen heroes, and they should be honored. It just seems that the politicians are making a big fuss over something that it’s not.

  2. You have a legitimate question. However in htis day and age where law enforcement face threats both physically and emotionally by those low life tramps trying to trample on law enforcement they need every ounce of support they can get. These are the men and woman protecting democracy, protecting our safety. If it became accepted to have a thin line painted on some roads to show support I am all for painting those blue lines across America!! Everyone in the community knows what they are for. The message of this bill is that we must back our PD in any way possible.

    A proud supporter of the brave men and woman in blue!

    Stay safe, god bless you and your families!!

  3. So basically they’re saying they’re afraid handicap people will park on the road due to the same color being used IN THE MIDDLE OF THE ROAD scary that’s who we have at the highest level. But anyway big thanks to the men and women in blue!

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