Traffic Violence Claims Another Life as NYPD Announces Enforcement Blitz

The pedestrian death toll stands at 13 since October 31. NYPD said a man hit by a driver in Queens last weekend died from his injuries Wednesday, according to Gothamist. Meanwhile, police announced a period of “focused enforcement” of the most dangerous driving violations.

Council Member Peter Koo is encouraging NYPD to waste enforcement resources that could be used to save lives.
Council Member Peter Koo is encouraging NYPD to waste enforcement resources that could be used to save lives.

On Sunday at around 5 p.m., a 70-year-old man driving a Honda minivan hit a 59-year-old man as the victim walked on College Point Boulevard at 41st Avenue in Flushing, Gothamist reported. No charges were filed.

The crash occurred in the 109th Precinct, where on Monday elected officials and the precinct’s commanding officer declared a crackdown on walking. Motorists have killed three pedestrians in the last five weeks in the 109th Precinct, which Gothamist says has issued fewer tickets for speeding and failure to yield in 2015 compared to last year.

NYC DOT’s 2010 pedestrian safety study analyzed records of 7,000 pedestrian-involved crashes and found that motorist behavior was the main factor in 78.5 percent of serious pedestrian injuries and fatalities. But after Monday’s press conference, when Transportation Alternatives called on police and officials to concentrate on reckless driving and outdated street design, Council Member Peter Koo insisted that New Yorkers need to be told how to walk.

“We want to educate the public,” said Koo, who according to DNAinfo initiated the meeting with the 109th Precinct, “they have to use the crosswalks to walk and they have to follow the streetlights.”

Today NYPD announced the department has ramped up citywide enforcement of motorist violations including speeding, failure to yield, distracted driving, and double-parking. Through November 22, “the NYPD will increase officer hours and overtime dedicated to traffic enforcement,” according to a press release.

TA released a statement on the enforcement blitz:

Mayor de Blasio and the NYPD are sending an important message on Vision Zero traffic enforcement by dedicating more officers to the effort to deter the most dangerous violations: speeding, failure to yield and distracted driving. We are particularly encouraged to see that this initiative includes multiple NYPD bureaus and precincts. If traffic enforcement is to be effective and equitable, it must be data-driven and consistent across the five boroughs. We call on the NYPD to continue to target the most deadly violations after this focused enforcement period ends on November 22nd.

  • SteveVaccaro

    The announcement of the details of the enforcement campaign are pretty interesting:

    “The NYPD To Conduct Additional Focused Enforcement on Dangerous Driving”

    Through November 22nd the NYPD will increase the deployment of personnel
    dedicated to the enforcement of dangerous driving such as speeding, failure to
    yield to pedestrians, distracted driving, and parking in traffic lanes.

    The NYPD’s operations have already begun, and will span multiple bureaus including the Highway Patrol, Traffic Operations and Enforcement Districts, as well as all 77 precincts of the Patrol Services Bureau. Commands will deploy an additional 8-hours of focused enforcement each day based on pedestrian collision data.

    During this period, the NYPD will increase officer hours and overtime dedicated to traffic enforcement. In total, the NYPD will commit more than 12,000 enforcement hours per day to this operation.

    The NYPD has committed the following personnel resources to this initiative:

    · Highway
    District: 230 police officers

    · Traffic
    Operations District: 150 police officers

    · Traffic
    Enforcement District: 1185 Traffic Enforcement Agents

    · Patrol
    Services Bureau: 154 police officers

    The announcement is unusual and promising, in several ways. Most importantly, the initiative is said to be focused on dangerous behaviors, rather than on technical violations. It is significant that precinct lever officers
    are involved, since they patrol the residential neighborhoods were
    dangerous driving poses the greatest threat of injury and death. It is
    also unusual for the precise staffing devoted to focused enforcement
    effort announced.

    While the focus, scope, and transparency of the initiative are a welcome change, the question remains whether the deployed officers will conduct fish-in-a-barrel, gotcha ticketing of technical violations, or if as advertised they will target actual dangerous driving. It will also be interesting to see whether the
    Traffic Enforcement Agents deployed in this initiative–who account for
    more than 2/3 of the effort–will issue tickets for parking in bike
    lanes, as well as for routine double parking.

  • walks bikes drives

    Let’s be honest. Parking in bike lanes is only a safety issue for cyclists. Enforecent here is going to always be lax because it is not concerning to them (them being NYPD).

  • Andrew

    And what happens on November 23?

  • mattkime

    I’d like to point out that much of this enforcement could be automated. no reason for the nypd to make a “heroic” effort.

  • Josh

    This is a total waste of Police resources. Ticketing motorists won’t make the streets any safer.

  • Alexander Vucelic

    observed 2 tickets being written today for parking in bike lanes – rather angry outer boro types arguing with cops.

  • rao

    Koo translated: Out of the way of my limo, people!

  • Miles Bader

    Banning cars will very certainly make the streets (a lot!) safer, though. I guess they’d better do that….

  • Tyler

    How many of those 12,000 ‘enforcement hours’ are normally deployed in a given day? Based on the NYPD’s stats (other than parking meters), I imagine very few. It would be an interesting “experiment” if the NYPD actually stood by their data-driven rhetoric and focused their attention on this major source of death and injury.

  • Josh

    Banning cars will make the city streets safe according to Miles, than bicycles will be next. Then they will ban walking. Next no one will be alllowed outside their homes. Vision Zero is about giving up our freedoms and controlling people .

  • Miles Bader

    Be careful, they’re coming to take your guns!1! ><

  • fdtutf

    Vision Zero is about keeping people from being killed on the streets, mostly by cars. Is the freedom to kill people with your car one of the freedoms you’re clinging to?

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