Skip to Content
Streetsblog New York City home
Streetsblog New York City home
Log In
Streetsblog

Friday’s Headlines: Death and Die-In Edition

12:03 AM EST on January 20, 2023

Lev Fruchter, the son of Norman Fruchter and Rachel Fruchter, both of whom were killed in road violence 25 years apart, spoke at a vigil for his father in Bay Ridge on Thursday night. Behind him are (left) State Sen. Andrew Gounardes and Comptroller Brad Lander. Photo: Bobby Preti

Today!
The die-in is at 9 a.m. on Friday.
Today!

The big story of the day will be today's 9 a.m. "die-in" at the intersection of Second Avenue and Ninth Street in Gowanus, the spot where Sarah Schick was killed by a truck driver last week.

Little remains known about the final moments leading up to the crash, but everyone knows that the Department of Transportation has had many years (and many false starts) in making that stretch of Ninth Street safe for cyclists. You'll hear plenty of complaints from cyclists about near misses that could have become tragedies — and more calls for the city to do something.

Friday's action comes just hours after grieving relatives and friends of Norman Fruchter gathered in Bay Ridge's Owls Head Park on Thursday night to mourn the loss of the education reform giant who was killed earlier this month by a reckless driver steps from his home. Fructer's wife, Rachel, was herself killed by a reckless driver in Prospect Park 25 years ago.

Neither driver — the trucker who killed Schick nor the reversing hellcat who ran down Fruchter — has been charged in the deaths, but legal accountability is only one demand of city cyclists and pedestrians. The other is better design to slow down these reckless drivers who last year killed 17 cyclists and more than 125 pedestrians, according to city stats.

It's worth repeating the litany of road hazards: Last year in New York City, there were 103,486 reported crashes, or 283 on the average day. Those crashes injured 49,408 of our fellow New Yorkers and visitors, including 5,014 cyclists and 8,935 pedestrians. Those numbers are, as the DOT pointed out earlier this month, getting better. But they are still horrific.

And, speaking of Ninth Street, there was a crash on a very busy stretch of the roadway between Fifth and Sixth avenues featuring a Virginia-plated driver who messed up big time. We pointed out that his plates are probably part of a "Where Do My Neighbors Live"-style insurance scam, given how many local tickets this scofflaw has racked up:

In other news:

    • Here's another reason to take away police parking. (NY Post)
    • Add being a reckless driver to Rep. George Santos's list of scams. (NY Post)
    • We need to keep putting street trees to work. (NY Times)
    • Suburban pols are still complaining about congestion pricing (NY Post), which the numbers show will benefit more constituents (the larger group that takes transit vs. the smaller group that drives into or through the Manhattan central business district) than they care to admit, as we pointed out in a tweet:
    • Cops and other city workers are filling the new pedestrian zones in Hells Kitchen. What a surprise. (W42St)
    • Jose Martinez is still on the MTA elevators story, which appears to have become personal for him. (The City)

Stay in touch

Sign up for our free newsletter

More from Streetsblog New York City

Congestion Pricing Opponents Are Blocking Disabled Access to Mass Transit, Politicians Charge

Just as the MTA begins speeding up new elevator construction, congestion pricing opponents are poised to stop it.

February 23, 2024

Legislation Introduced in Georgia to Fight Temporary License Plate Fraud

The bill is the most significant effort yet to stop the flow of fraudulent paper tags from Georgia car dealerships to New York City streets.

February 23, 2024

Community Board Backs DOT Road Diet for Brooklyn’s Deadly Third Av.

“This is just a beginning of what we could do to fix our community,” said one board member. “This is not done, this is not where we finish off.”

February 23, 2024

Friday’s Headlines: More Lunch Consumption Edition

Streetfilms goes to Paris. Plus more news.

February 23, 2024

Advocates Slam Albany Pols for Using Transit Fund to Encourage Driving

Gov. Hochul and state legislators in Albany are spending a congestion pricing-adjacent fund on toll rebates for drivers and showing zero interest in bus or rail, transit advocates charged.

February 23, 2024
See all posts