Today’s Headlines

  • City government: wake the hell up and change the way car crashes are treated by cops and courts, because the way it is now, everyone EXCEPT the perpetrator pays for them.

    Between four or six people were sent to the hospital yesterday. Their day being ruined is bad enough, if you ask me–and they were lucky.

    One or more of them may very well sue the City and/or various city agencies. That’s our tax money. And guess who WON’T get in trouble!

    Acording to the witnesses in the three reports linked here, at least one of the two taxis ran a red light, and one or both may have been speeding. But acording to the Sun, an NYPD spokesperson said the Times Square taxi-on-peds crash was “in no way criminal.”

    Obviously, obviously, effing obviously, the crash is the fault of one or both of the drivers. But the police have already said no, that’s not true.

    Cops, City politicians, and DAs: wake the eff up re car crashes. Change the way they are handled, investigated, and reported. Do it BEFORE one of yours gets hurt. Or after. Whatever it takes. But just do it.

  • Michael Steiner

    Hope Cohen proposes removing parking (lanes) and rhetorically asks“But why cafe tables at the crossroads of the world?” Well, why should there be cars instead?! In particular, given that he wants to remove parking which essentially increases the amount of drive-through traffic, the traffic we certainly want the least in the city …

  • momos

    DDartley, isn’t it incredible how there’s a consensus on zero-tolerance for DWIs, but drivers who run over pedestrians are never held accountable (unless, of course, they were drunk behind the wheel)?

    NYPD should make it loud and clear: in the City of New York any and all drivers harming pedestrians will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law. Period. In vehicle-pedestrian collisions fault should automatically be assigned to the driver. This combined with zero-tolerance enforcement will make it clear who has priority on the streets of New York.

  • Good idea, momos–your suggested policy change and statement.

    Wouldn’t it be nice if the City actually put out official statements like that–“motorists harming peds will be prosecuted”?

    And if they did, they could do it in a way that appeals to motorists’ better angels:

    Check out the statements by and about the taxi driver in the Times Square incident. He doesn’t seem like a monster. Sure, he’s probably at least partly to blame for the injuries, but he may just have been driving like most people unfortunately do, and he did seem appropriately distraught over the injuries.

    Wouldn’t it be nice if the City–in PSAs or some such form–could warn drivers–not about harming others, but about putting THEMSELVES at risk of such guilt and distress…? (Seriously, maybe that would work better than “drive safe or else!)

    And hey, mysteriously, the other taxi driver is not quoted or described in any of the stories linked here. Did he leave the scene? If so, still no pursuit/arrest/charges? Still absolutely “not criminal,” according to the police?

  • Good point, Michael (although Hope Cohen is a woman). From a livable streets perspective, as a general rule, space dedicated to parked cars is preferable to space dedicated to moving cars. Space dedicated to pedestrians, cyclists and transit is even more preferable, but you work with what you have.

  • “Cops, City politicians, and DAs: wake the eff up re car crashes. Change the way they are handled, investigated, and reported. Do it BEFORE one of yours gets hurt. Or after. Whatever it takes. But just do it.”

    A cop or a government higher-up getting run over is about what it’s going to take, sadly.

  • “Wouldn’t it be nice if the City–in PSAs or some such form–could warn drivers–not about harming others, but about putting THEMSELVES at risk of such guilt and distress…?”

    What, like this?
    http://www.dicorep.com/images/meilleurville/panneaux-pers/evitez-le-pire.gif

    How unpleasant! Let’s just blame people for being “in the road” instead.

  • Andy B from Jersey

    I caught the two different news broadcasts last night before I fell asleep that talked of the incidents in Times Square. The first broadcast covered the car crash first that injured a number of pedestrians and then the story about falling glass that luckily hurt no one.

    The second (and I do forget which the two broadcasters were) covered the falling glass story and didn’t even cover the crash with the multiple pedestrian injuries.

    I guess falling glass that hurts no one is scarier in the consciousness of New Yorkers than getting hit by a cars that kill countless number of people every year. Or at least we’ve come to expect to get killed by cars so it’s no big deal!