The New Jersey Bell Telephone Company had
its headquarters located at 540 Broad Street. This company was part
of the Bell System and I am proud to say I was part of it for 37
years. It was the best of the best! No question about it in my mind.
This company was one of the largest employers in the City of Newark
and on a statewide level they employed around 30,000 people.
They spent a tremendous amount of time and money protecting their
employees. Safety was an integral part of the job. We would spend
one hour a week with each employee on safety lessons and training.
New Jersey Bell recommended the use of automobile seatbelts to our
employees before Detroit did. On a state level our motor vehicle
fleet was second only to the State of New Jersey's fleet.
The next time you see a telephone vehicle take notice to the safety
traffic cone that is placed behind every parked vehicle. We have
been doing that for almost 30 years. The purpose of the cone is
to force the driver to look behind the rear of his vehicle before
Around 25 years ago one of our employees came up with the idea
of putting a stoplight on the bottom of the rear window. This presented
the stoplight at eye level in stop and goes driving. Eventually
Detroit caught on to the idea and made it standard equipment on
The next time you are driving in traffic take notice to the car
in front of you. When his stoplights go on remember two things.
One you came from Newark and so did the idea for the elevated stoplights.