Another Pedestrian is Killed by a Driver on Staten Island

The Google street view shows that there is no signal at the intersection of Justin and South Railroad avenues in Staten Island.
The Google street view shows that there is no signal at the intersection of Justin and South Railroad avenues in Staten Island.

A pedestrian was run down and killed by a driver in Staten Island at a four-way stop at a Staten Island Railway station, police said.

According to cops, John Vlahos, 78, was hit as he crossed South Railroad Avenue at Justin Avenue at around 4 p.m. Monday by a 35-year-old driver who was traveling southbound on South Railroad. He was taken to Staten Island North Hospital, where he died.

The driver, whose name was not released, remained on the scene and was not charged.

Many details are unclear. Cops said Vlahos was crossing from the north sidewalk to the south sidewalk of South Railway Avenue — except that there is no south sidewalk on that part of the avenue. Vlahos may have been crossing the street to get to one of the parked cars that line that roadway. Or he may have been heading to the Bay Terrace station of the island’s mini-train system.

South Railroad is a notorious speedway, Staten Islanders tell Streetsblog.

Vlahos is the first person killed at the intersection. Two pedestrians have been injured at that intersection since January, 2017. In the larger 122nd Precinct, there were 5,370 crashes last year, resulting in injuries to nine cyclists, 164 pedestrians and 1,068 motorists. That’s roughly 15 crashes per day.

This is the third known pedestrian fatality this year in Staten Island. In March, Daniel Dunn, 17, hit Salvatore Pierro, 71, on Annadale Road, police said. And in April, Anastasia Diaz, 89, was run down in the crosswalk as she crossed Bradley Avenue at Purdy Avenue. Both drivers were charged.

  • Emmily_Litella

    Shouldn’t killing someone in a crosswalk be automatic grounds for a sobriety test? If the motorist tests positive for anything, that should be sufficient for conviction of a crime that carries a minimum penalty of jail time. I know, keep dreaming.

  • Frank Kotter

    These curbs were just redone. Who approved the design and why are there no predestrian-friendly design elements? ZERO vision from the DOT
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/7e26f4bf3f42ab67ae3507a89cf2d86e6ff4f2dbf0c84dabfc8cb025727a6cc3.png

  • Vooch

    80% probability driver exceeded 25MPH when he killed the victim

  • JarekFA

    curb extensions are really expensive because you have to deal with the rain run off/drainage issue. But even if “high quality” curb extensions aren’t cost effective, nothing stopping DoT from putting boulders and other physical elements to shorter crossings and protect pedestrians. It’s this aspect where it becomes clear that we have an absolute failure of leadership at the DoT. An Andy Byford (or JSK)w ould be looking for cost-effective and creative solutions to roll out safety measures on a systemic basis. None of this one off, incremental bullshit, where you have to go before a bunch of veto boards for banal and basis safety infrastructure.

  • 6SJ7

    Concrete curb extensions would be a problem for fire trucks at that intersection of two relatively narrow 2-way streets. Painted curb extensions would work better and are safer. I doubt that the NYCDOT would ever approve a traffic signal at that intersection of two residential streets.

  • Bernard Finucane

    >curb extensions are really expensive because you have to deal with the rain run off/drainage issue.
    Not true actually. You can put in the curb extensions without raising the sidewalk and leave gaps at the gutter for water to run through.

    But I do agree that just adding a few rocks would be even cheaper. Anyway, the city doesn’t have any excuse for letting this happen over and over again.

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