New Jersey Forced to Remove Sarcastic Highway Safety Messages by Feds

Phrases included "We'll be blunt—don't drive high" and "Get your head out of your apps."

Drivers on New Jersey's state highway system may have seen some comedic safety messages on digital billboards recently, but they'll now have to kiss them goodbye.

As The Philadelphia Inquirer reports, the New Jersey Department of Transportation was forced to remove these creative messages by the Federal Highway Administration about a month after their debut. The phrases delivered driving safety tips with a hint of trademark Garden State sarcasm, displaying messages like "We'll be blunt—don't drive high," "Hold onto your butts—help prevent forest fires," and "Get your head out of your apps." There was even one with a reference to Bruce Springsteen's song "Thunder Road."

Although the NJDOT didn't explain why they were ordered to remove the messages, a recent tweet alluded to their potentially distracting nature, urging people not to take pictures of them while driving.

Phrases that will no longer appear on digital billboards include:

  • Don't cruise boozed.
  • Hocus pocus—drive with focus.
  • We'll be blunt—don't drive high.
  • Hold on to your butts—help prevent forest fires.
  • Be a dear—watch for wildlife.
  • Mash potatoes—not your head
  • Get your head out of your apps.
  • It just clicks. Wear your seatbelt.
  • Slow down. This ain't Thunder Road.
  • Nice car. Did it come with a turn signal?

Check out some photos of the offending signage below:

Courtesy of NJDOT
Courtesy of NJDOT

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Chris Mench is an editor focusing on NYC News at Thrillist. You can follow him on Twitter for more of his work.