HOWELL — An 80-year-old driver who was looking up directions on his cellphone blew through a stop sign, causing a police cruiser to ram into the side of his sedan, police said.

"Ironically," Chief Andrew Kudrick said, the officer had been out enforcing the distracted driving law as part of a monthlong crackdown across the state.

"Distracted driving, specifically cellphone use, has been a contributing factor in the majority of crashes in Howell," Kudrick said. "This is another unfortunate example of the consequences of these violations."

The crash happened a day before the state attorney general announced a campaign to promote the #77 hotline to report distracted driving on roads.

Township resident Gregory Nayvelt was driving on Casino Drive when he crossed the intersection with West Farms Road about 1:30 p.m. Wednesday, police said.

Nayvelt and his 75-year-old female passenger had to be rescued from the sedan by the Adelphia Fire Co. Both were hospitalized with moderate injuries.

The police officer injured his hand.

Police expect to issue summonses for traffic violations against the sedan driver, adding that four witnesses saw the car go through the stop.

Sergio Bichao is deputy digital editor at New Jersey 101.5. Send him news tips: Call 609-359-5348 or email sergio.bichao@townsquaremedia.com.

Sign up for the NJ1015.com Newsletter

Get the best of NJ1015.com delivered to your inbox every day.