A cyclist in Central Park struck a woman yesterday afternoon, inflicting life-threatening injuries. The victim, 59-year-old Jill Tarlov of Fairfield, is on life support, according to the Daily News. The Post reports that she has been declared brain-dead.
The collision happened on the West Drive of the park at around 4:30 p.m. Tarlov was in a crosswalk near 63rd Street, which has a traffic light, when Jason Marshall struck her on a racing bike. Accounts in the Post and the Daily News don’t specify who had the right of way or what speed Marshall was traveling. Police told Gothamist that Marshall had swerved to avoid other pedestrians. An investigation is ongoing.
Regardless of the color of the traffic light, this crash happened in a park that’s supposed to be a refuge for everyone.
Transportation Alternatives released the following statement regarding the crash:
Because we are serious about reaching Vision Zero, we need to speak out in response to every preventable tragedy and condemn all acts of reckless behavior in traffic. As the most vulnerable users of our streets, pedestrians must be safe from reckless cycling, just as they need to be protected from reckless driving. This is particularly true in our parks. As we await the conclusion of the investigation, our thoughts are with Jill Tarlov and her family during this difficult time.
It is extremely rare for a cyclist to fatally injure a pedestrian in New York City, but this is the second fatal or potentially fatal bike-ped collision in Central Park this year. After five years in New York without a fatal crash, a teenage bike rider struck and killed 75-year-old Irving Schachter on the east side of the park loop in August.