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Woman Fatally Struck By Hit-and-Run Driver in Queens

It's the latest death in an already bloody year on New York City streets.

11:27 AM EST on February 1, 2024

A 61-year-old woman was run down and killed by the driver of an SUV early on Thursday morning, the latest death in an already bloody year on New York City streets.

According to police, the woman, whose name was not released, but was later identified by family as Yenny Baquedano, was crossing 90th Street in Jackson Heights at around 6:40 a.m. when the driver of an SUV, heading eastbound on 37th Avenue, hit her and kept on driving.

Cops provided no other details about the crash. Baquedano was taken to Elmhurst Hospital, where she died. Video showed that she was crossing against the light, but also that the driver appeared to be speeding.

The family has created a GoFundMe page to raise money for a funeral.

According to the DOT, there have already been at least 19 fatalities this year, the same as last year. Nine of those fatalities have been pedestrians, up from seven during the same period last year.

And injuries are also up 2.6 percent so far this year, with already 3,465 people injured, the vast majority by car drivers, in the first 28 days of 2024. That's 123 people injured on the average day.

In Jackson Heights, 37th Avenue is well known as the chaotic commercial spine of the neighborhood — a two-way street with awkwardly angled side streets, lots of double-parking and speeding.

In 2023, there were 86 reported crashes just between 69th and 95th streets, resulting in 45 injuries, including seven to cyclists and 16 to pedestrians, city stats show. By comparison, the same length of commercial Seventh Avenue in Park Slope had 41 reported crashes, injuring 22 people.

The latest death comes just hours after a minivan driver struck and killed a 68-year-old who was crossing Glenwood Road in the crosswalk at E. 105th Street in Canarsie. It was the second death on Glenwood Road in less than a week.

According to Transportation Alternatives, the two-mile stretch of Glenwood Road is dangerous — with 10 serious injuries since the beginning of 2022. The safety group slammed DOT for installing only two Leading Pedestrian Intervals on the stretch since the start of Vision Zero in 2014.

“We are devastated and angry to learn that reckless drivers have killed two New Yorkers on Glenwood Road in the last week," said the group's Executive Director Danny Harris. “These deaths aren’t accidents, and our elected leaders can make changes today that will save lives tomorrow. ... We will not stand silently as more of our neighbors are killed on city streets.”

Correction: An earlier version of this story misidentified the neighborhood where the crash occurred because I'm an idiot and just typed "Elmhurst" instead of "Jackson Heights" even though I've been on that corner like 100 times.

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