Tracking the NYPD’s enforcement of traffic laws, including tickets issued to cyclists, has long been part of Transportation Alternatives’ job. A new tool on their website makes it easier than ever — especially relevant while the city’s bike ticketing blitz continues.
The new web form looks just like a traffic ticket, so you can just copy the information onto the site, box by box. Collecting that data “really helps us get a better perspective on where to target our advocacy efforts,” explained Aja Hazelhoff, a bike advocate with T.A.
As an example, she explained, T.A. is working with a number of other cycling groups on the police ticketing of Central Park cyclists. “This helps us in our meetings with the NYPD and the city to help characterize the nature of what’s going on in Central Park as opposed to other areas of the city,” said Hazelhoff.
Soon, luckily, there won’t be quite so much need for this kind of ticket tracking. Once the Savings Lives Through Better Information Bill goes into effect, said Hazelhoff, accurate information about every traffic summons in the city will be available monthly. That summons information, though, will still only be available at the precinct level, rather than broken out into individual locations, meaning that finer-grained geographical detail will still be important to flesh out the picture of police enforcement in New York City.
In addition, T.A. is currently filing a freedom of information request with the police department to see what violations the current bike ticket blitz has been focusing on and in what locations. “We’re going to be making the argument that if it doesn’t align with safety priorities, it should,” said T.A. general counsel Juan Martinez.