The Leslie Crocker Snyder campaign has announced a detailed transportation safety plank, rounding out a field of Manhattan district attorney candidates committed to advancements in traffic justice.
Like Richard Aborn and Cy Vance, Snyder says she would: focus on prevention and deterrence through stepped-up enforcement and graduated penalties for gateway offenses like speeding; disregard the "Rule of Two" in assessing driver negligence; and revamp the crash scene investigation process.
Snyder has also pledged to elevate the stature of the Manhattan DA’s vehicular crimes unit by establishing a bureau chief position, following the model of DA offices in Brooklyn and the Bronx.
The Bureau Chief will have prosecutors on call to respond to the scene
of any automobile accident in which someone is killed to conduct an
investigation independently of the NYPD. When dealing with vehicular
crimes and criminally negligent homicide, it is essential that the
District Attorney’s Office obtain every piece of evidence possible to
ensure the proper investigation and prosecution of each case, because
traffic accidents often include a number of uniquely technical and
circumstantial factors that must be considered in their entirety.
Further, Snyder says she would work with NYPD to raise public awareness of speeding and distracted driving, "similar to other campaigns warning against drunk driving and encouraging the use of seat belts."
Campaign promises are, of course, worth only as much as the paper they’re printed on. But the response by all three candidates for district attorney has brought sorely-needed attention to a pervasive public safety menace that — unlike falling cranes and foolhardy football players — is most often regarded as a natural phenomena, as unmanageable as the weather. And now that each has vowed on the record to approach traffic crime with the seriousness it deserves, as Transportation Alternatives’ Peter Goldwasser told the candidates earlier this summer, “Once one of you is in office, we’ll remind you of the things you said today.”