New Jersey

Long Lines Snake Around NJ MVC Centers After Monthslong Coronavirus Shutdown

The facilities shut down in March due to the coronavirus pandemic

NBC Universal, Inc.

At some Motor Vehicle Commission locations in New Jersey, lines wrapped around the building multiple times as thousands of people waited outside in the heat to renew licenses or file other documents.

The state shut down all MVC facilities in March due to the coronavirus pandemic, and extended expiration dates multiple times during the closures. All licenses, state IDs, commercial registrations and temporary tags that expired between March 13 and May 31 are valid through July 31, the MVC website says.

If those documents expired June 30, they are extended to Aug. 31. If they expire July 31, they are extended to Sept. 30, the MVC says.

The website also urged customers to wait a week or more before arriving in person, and to check if they can "skip the trip" in-person by completing their task online. The agency said if a transaction could be completed online, it would not be processed in person. If you don't have internet access, visit a library, use a friend's internet connection or their smartphone, a spokesperson suggested.

Still, the first day the facilities were open led to long lines at MVC locations across the state. In Cherry Hill on Tuesday, a line stretched through the parking lot as some people brought lawn chairs, preparing to sit for awhile.

In Camden on Tuesday, people were sent home after waiting in line for hours. Workers at the facility told the crowd they were at capacity.

In Cherry Hill on Tuesday, one man in line told NBC10 that he visited two other spots that day, ditching the Camden location and another one in Gloucester County because of long lines.

"We get to Thorofare [West Deptford], it wraps around the building four times. We come here, it ain't no better. This is some BS," said the man, who declined to give his government name. "But we ain't got no choice. Who's gonna walk to work? Not me."

Several people had been waiting in line since the early morning before the agencies opened. The facilities have strict capacity limits to adhere to social distancing guidelines, and all customers need to wear a face mask.

The lines continued on Wednesday morning with people lining up around midnight at the Salem MVC location after not being served Tuesday.

A line at the West Deptford location stretched around the building and the parking lot was packed with people.

The state also urges people to make sure the services they need are offered at the location where they're waiting.

NBC10's Brandon Hudson contributed to this report.

The New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission reopened on Tuesday causing thousands to gather on line amid sweltering temperatures. NBC10’s Brandon Hudson has the details.
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