Today’s Headlines

  • Mark Fleischmann

    The NYT story on the “demand-led energy shock,” while an improvement over the paper’s past coverage, still fails to mention the phrase “peak oil.” Peak oil denial is still the rule, not the exception, in the mainstream media.

  • Larry Littlefield

    I am shocked, shocked to find that public hearings are a joke.

    BTW, it isn’t MTA public hearings that are a joke dominated by grandstanding politicians and official representatives. It’s all public hearings. A better form of soliciting public participation must be devised.

  • ddartley

    Re: “DOT says safety regs…”

    NYCDOT: is the News’s paraphrase of Woloch true, that you study only DEATH locations? If so, then yeah, you’re right, studying death spots is not smart. You should study locations where peds are INJURED AT ALL, of course.

    Obvious to even a moron, frequent-injury-but-non-death locations have simply been LUCKY; of course they are bound to become death spots sooner or later. Study them.

    And if, in spite of the above, you really are right, that your experts really do have better ways to improve ped safety than studying crash locations, then you should be more public with what those superior approaches are. Unfair or not, the News article makes you look very dismissive of very reasonable doubts and questions that the public has.

  • Jonathan

    Does anyone know offhand what exactly those DOT studies of crash locations involve? Maybe they could be effectively open-sourced for volunteers to compile. I doubt that these dossiers comprise much more than the police report and maybe some field observations at the same time and day of week that the crash took place.

    But one word in support of DOT: when I consider the plague of pedestrians struck by cars, I think that many factors in crashes are not particularly location-dependent. Crash caused by DWI, police pursuit or reckless speeding? Could have happened anywhere. Better to work on citywide ameliorations instead of trees-for-forest investigations at specific sites.

  • mkultra

    dot looks at both fatality and high-injury locations. their quality of analysis varies depending on the particular location & circumstances. i agree that they should be more public with their locations analyzed, analysis process and results. the closest thing till then is their annual “safe streets” report, available on their website.

  • mkultra,
    In fact DOT admitted they DO NOT look at high injury locations, only deaths.
    Jonathan, per NYstate reports , in 75% of accidents , there is no fault attributabel to pedestrians. ( what the police calls “contributing factors”)
    Sweeden has a new street design program with a goal of 0 fatalities and injuries. They have concluded that drivers will continue to behave dangerously: therefore their DOT needs engineer the road with this assiumption in mind to protect the pedestrians/cyclist.

    A radical concept: since we cannot reform drivers, we better build around them

  • Older & Wiser NYer

    It may be helpful to use litigation in a more organized way. For example, it became common knowledge that one could sue the city for damages due to a pothole if the city had been formally (i.e. in writing) notified of its existence. As a result of the tremendous payouts, the city made a massive effort to eliminate potholes. Now they are rare.

    So, TA or some organization should file a complaint of each accident site, warning the city about the conditions that caused it. The next time there is an incident, said organization should contact the victim and pursue a claim. They may not win, but it will cost the city $ to defend and the city will become more responsive to fixing chronic problem situations.

    I realize there is a reluctance to turn this new collegial relationship into an adversarial one, but let’s not beatify the city either. If TA can’t be the “bad cop,” find an organization not afraid to be.