[HISTORY: Adopted by the Mayor and Council of the Borough of Chester 9-19-2006 by Ord. No. 2006-22. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Finding and determination. It is hereby determined that the operation and parking of motor vehicles in the vicinity of buildings devoted for public use, including but not limited to shopping centers, nursing homes, hospitals, schools, public building, churches and similar uses, constitute a danger to public health, safety and welfare in that the approach, operation and departure of fire equipment and other emergency vehicles may be impeded by such operation and parking of motor vehicles. Accordingly, fire zones and lanes shall be established by the Borough Fire Official and/or Borough Engineer on public and private properties in the Borough of Chester, Morris County, New Jersey.
For the purposes of regulating the operation of motor vehicles in the vicinity of buildings devoted to public use, "fire zone," "fire lane(s)," "Fire Department connections (FDC)," "hydrants," "pumping stations" and "critical utility connections" shall have synonymous meaning for the purpose of this chapter to prevent obstruction of same.
The provisions of this chapter, including the addition of new and amended fire zones and lanes may be amended at the direction of the Fire Official and/or Borough Engineer, upon recommendation of the Chief of Police, and approval of the Borough Council.
The Fire Official, Borough Engineer and/or Chief of Police shall review new and existing site plans and, when necessary and as conditions warrant, make recommendations for amendments to such plans. Such recommendations shall be based upon the size, type of construction and location of the building or buildings involved; the use to which the property, building or buildings is put; the number of motor vehicles operated or parked upon the property; the number of persons using and occupying the property, building or buildings; the existing means of ingress to and egress from the property, building or buildings; the total area of the property, including the size of the parking lot; and all other factors which are deemed relevant to the public health, safety and welfare of the citizens of and visitors to the Borough of Chester. Any and all amendments shall be forwarded to the Borough Council for review and approval.
The Chief of Police or his designee shall designate fire zones in the Borough of Chester on public and private property as deemed necessary to protect the public health, safety and welfare and shall cause an adequate number of signs and pavement markings conforming to provisions of the Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) to be erected and maintained in all approved fire zones.
Signs and pavement markings shall conform to the MUTCD, including but not limited to the following requirements:
The Fire Official and/or Borough Engineer shall design pavement marking for fire zones.
Fire zones identifying FDC, points of egress, critical utility connection and like areas deemed necessary shall be marked with four-inch yellow painted lines outlining and defining the zone, and/or diagonal lines.
Property owners or the property agent shall, before installation or maintenance of pavement markings, consult with the Chief of Police or designee for any changes to plans or design.
Plans, drawings, site plans or sketches of regulated properties. A plan showing each fire zone or fire lane, depicting all traffic control devices in effect for the specific regulated property. The plan will also show the design of the parking area, including but not limited to parking areas; traffic lanes; parking aisles; fire zones; fire lanes; handicap parking spaces; pavement markings; and all other controls or devices deemed necessary to regulate traffic and the overall site where any form of traffic is affected. Plans approved and made part of this chapter will be kept on file in the Borough Clerk's office. The Police Department shall be responsible for review of plans for traffic control and enforcement and shall make modifications as required to preserve public health, safety and welfare. Any plan filed pursuant to this chapter shall be submitted for approval of the Borough Council. The exclusive purpose of any plan submitted pursuant to this chapter shall be regulation of traffic and shall not nullify any site plan approved by the Planning Board or Board of Adjustment. Any site plan approved by the Borough Planning Board or Board Adjustment shall be used as a model in creating the traffic plan for a regulated property.
It shall be the responsibility of the property owner to install and maintain signage and pavement markings in accordance with approved plans and at the direction of the Fire Official, Chief of Police and/or Borough Engineer.
All costs and procurement is the responsibility of the property owner.
In the event that a property owner fails to comply with the requirements hereof, the Borough may arrange to have signs and/or pavement markings installed at the expense of the property owner, said amount to be assessed against the property affected and collected through the Borough Tax Collector's office.
No person shall park, stop, or leave standing, any vehicle, whether attended or unattended, or otherwise obstruct or impede a designated fire zone or fire lane.
This chapter shall be enforced by the Police Department of the Borough of Chester.
Persons and vehicles on official business, including but not limited to Fire Department vehicles and ambulances, Fire Department and first aid members and police and municipal vehicles and municipal employees, when engaged in actual performance of their duty. In addition, exemptions may be granted on a case-by-case basis giving consideration to unusual deliveries which may require occupying an otherwise prohibited area or zone; drivers or passengers with disabilities; challenged deliveries; utility, maintenance and the like. Vehicles being operated in such circumstances shall promptly vacate the prohibited area as soon as practicable, or as requested by a police officer or other authorized person.
Site plans and all other plans with respect to a property may require amendment that recommended changes are approved by the governing body and incorporated into the municipal code and the site plan on file with the Borough Clerk
Any person in violation of the provisions of this chapter shall be liable to a fine of not more than $100 for each such violation.
Any vehicle parked in violation of this chapter shall be deemed a nuisance and a menace to the safe and proper regulation of traffic and any police officer may provide for the removal of such vehicle, at the expense of the vehicle's owner, including costs for towing and/or storage that may result from such removal before regaining possession of the vehicle.