De Blasio: Street Safety Advocates Not “Looking at the Facts”

Via @nahmias
Via @nahmias

On Monday Mayor Bill de Blasio managed to dismiss very real concerns about Vision Zero progress and the work street safety advocates are doing to stem the bloodshed and grief caused by traffic violence, all in one sentence.

When Politico reporter Laura Nahmias asked about New Yorkers who are holding him to his own administration’s Vision Zero goals, de Blasio reportedly replied: “I think sometimes they’re trying to justify their own role without looking at the facts.”

Here are some facts. The pressure exerted on de Blasio by safety advocates intensified after Queens motorists killed a teenage girl on her way to school and an infant in a stroller on a sidewalk in separate crashes that occurred within a span of five days.

With a few weeks left in the year, the number of people killed and injured by NYC motorists is higher than it was at the same point in 2015. With the city’s street safety record taking a step backward in 2016, advocates have a responsibility to call out de Blasio’s complacency.

Last week de Blasio implied he is fully funding Vision Zero street redesigns. But rather than ramp up funding, he has actually allowed it to stagnate, putting the completion of priority safety projects — those identified by DOT as the most critical to reducing injuries and deaths — well beyond Vision Zero’s 10-year timetable.

De Blasio deserves credit for initiating Vision Zero and backing it up with new laws and street designs. That early momentum is flagging, and it looks like advocates need to turn up the pressure on the mayor to get it back.

  • Kevin Love

    “With a few weeks left in the year, the number of people killed and injured by NYC motorists is higher than it was at the same point in 2015.”

    Source? Most people killed and injured by NYC motorists suffer these deaths and injuries due to being poisoned by motorists. Unlike cities such as Toronto, NYC does not publish Public Health data about these deaths and injuries. In Toronto, the deaths and injuries due to people being poisoned by motorists have been going down, even while the crash deaths have been going up. Since well over four times as many people die due to being poisoned by motorists as die due to being crushed by motorists, the overall death toll is down.

    How do you know that the same is not true in New York? In short, I regard your statement as having a lack of supporting data. It is entirely possible that the number of people killed and injured by NYC motorists is, in fact, lower now than it was at the same point in 2015.

  • Parent

    He took time to criticize advocates for being concerned about Vision Zero’s progress.

    He hasn’t expressed any concern for the family that lost an 8-month-old baby or the family that lost a teenage girl.

    Tells you everything.

  • J

    FACT: Traffic deaths are up in 2016
    FACT: de Blasio turned down additional money to speed up Vision Zero work

    What other facts are we not looking at, Bill?

  • Brad Aaron

    I regard your comment as purposely obtuse.