Wednesday’s Headlines: All Die-In, All The Time Edition

A protester at the "die-in" asks not to be the 16th cyclist killed by drivers this year. Photo: Dave Colon
A protester at the "die-in" asks not to be the 16th cyclist killed by drivers this year. Photo: Dave Colon

It’s obviously hard to ignore 1,000 people laying on the ground to protest the city’s dangerous roadway — so the major outlets were out in force to cover Tuesday night’s “die-in” in Washington Square Park.

Streetsblog had full team coverage, but the Daily News, amNY (which added a sidebar about all the cyclist deaths this year), PIX11 and ABC7 were also on hand. The Times did not cover.

It was a somber, sobering night for #bikenyc. So here’s the rest of the news you might have missed:

  • They grow up so fast. Former Streetsblog reporter David Meyer left us for the New York Post only about a month ago, and he already has his first wood — a classic tabloid front-page yarn about an MTA employee’s overtime scam.
  • Double-duty David also filed this story about how lousy the SBS service is on 14th Street because it was launched even though a judge blocked the city’s busway plan.
  • Legendary boondoggle debunker Neil DeMause followed our cynicism over Gov. Cuomo’s new LIRR station for the Islanders with his own detailed analysis that came to a similar conclusion: Boondoggle. (Gothamist)
  • What the F?! The MTA finally listened and is creating some F express service in Brooklyn, (amNY)
  • The Daily News had a good story about a billionaire who created a parking space for himself in the West Village with an illegal curb cut — and the tabloid had the inevitable red-faced city removal of said space within a day. But we would be remiss if we didn’t point out two things: the actual problem is the very notion that public space along the curb belongs to drivers in the first place. And also, isn’t it amazing how quickly the city can act when a newspaper puts a story on its front page? How about finishing Queens Boulevard as quickly, Mr. Mayor?
  • It really hasn’t been a great week for the public image of police, has it? (NY Post)
  • Council Member Brad Lander, who was at the die-in, is promising an update on his Reckless Driver Accountability Act some time today. (Lander via Twitter)
  • Hey, subway lady, your hair is on fire? Oh, you knew that? OK, carry on. (NY Post)
  • Meanwhile, the MTA is trying to give Queens commuters a poison ivy rash. (Gothamist)
  • And, finally, RuPaul blew up the internet again with a timely post about how bad cars are:

  • Joe R.

    If this die-in fails to have its intended effect maybe next time we should drag in models of dead corpses of people ran over by cars and trucks, complete with major organs hanging out. People are immune when you say someone died in “an accident”. Maybe showing them the results of that “accident” might wake them up.

  • Larry Littlefield

    Please change the bullet about an MTA worker’s overtime scam to an LIRR worker’s overtime scam, which to give credit where it is due is what the Post headline was.

    With money getting scarce, more powerful and rapacious interests, and politicians looking to avoid blame, are seeking something to cut, and LIRR abuses are going to be used to justify subway cuts. Since somehow LIRR abuses are eternal.

  • vnm

    The amNY sidebar is interesting. Of this year’s fatalities, 11 have been in Brooklyn, 0 in the Bronx, 0 in Staten Island, 1 in Queens and 3 in Manhattan. Does this mean anything? I have no idea. I just think it’s a weird statistical distribution to have almost all of the fatalities in the same borough. Usually where you have a lot of cyclists you have safety for cyclists, and I thought Brooklyn had a lot of cyclists. So I would say this may indicate the borough needs more attention than it is getting from the two agencies with the greatest sway over street safety, DOT and NYPD.

  • Blwndrpwrmlk

    It really hasn’t been a great week for the public image of police, has it? (NY Post)

    Those “Liberty” ticketsellers are nothing but thugs in red shirts. Accosting a state lawmaker, P.O. blaming BdB instead of doing their duty, it’s all around bad news. Regardless of her views on other things, or political affiliation, she should follow through on those people and not stop until the BBB is notified of their cheap selling tactics. They are just seeking to prey on the ill-advised or uninformed tourist.

  • qrt145

    Brooklyn has been the deadliest borough in every annual DOT crash report I’ve looked at (2012-2017), although sometimes it ties for first place with Manhattan or Queens.

    More cyclists may improve safety on a per-cyclist basis, but it also provides more potential victims. No one would say Staten Island is safer because it has fewer deaths; it’s just that relatively few people cycle there (quite possibly to some extent because it feels less safe).

    I agree that Brooklyn needs more attention. It’s not just the number of cyclists, but the infrastructure which isn’t as developed as in Manhattan, which of course also has lots of cyclists.

  • Pietro Gambadilegno

    It should be “people lying on the ground” – NOT “people laying on the ground.”

  • Joe Mama

    The LIRR overtime story is beyond repulsive. All of those guys should be in jail for fraud and have their assets confiscated, and every single worker and supervisor who knew about the scams should be investigated and fired. If any of their union reps knew about this and abetted it, throw them in jail and sue the unions too. Bankrupt the whole rotten institution and their pension plans too.

    So tired of the crocodile tears over fare increases and and tax increases and budget crunches when you’ve got God knows how many employees ripping off the MTA.

  • vnm

    Interesting info all around. This all makes sense.

  • Tomas Paine

    Maybe you shoud grow up and stop being a lunatic and stop riding your bicycle in the streets of the busiest city in the world with a population of over 8 million!

    You people are crazy. You are waiting for Godot. It aint’t ever happening people! Wake up!

    At least motorcyclists KNOW they’re doing something freaking crazy.

  • Joe R.

    Maybe motorists should stop driving in a city where driving is often slower than walking. That’s even more crazy. If fewer people drove, the city would be a lot safer for bikes.

    Also, over 3 times as many pedestrians died so far this year as cyclists. Should people stop walking here also because it’s too dangerous?


Streetsblog Interview: Ryan Russo

Ryan Russo is the New York City Department of Transportation’s Director for Street Management and Safety, a newly-created job that he started in July. Previously, Russo worked as DOT’s Downtown Brooklyn Transportation Coordinator where he was instrumental in designing and developing a number of improvements for pedestrians, cyclists and more livable streets (PDF file) over the last three years. Streetsblog caught up […]