Tragic twists, crackdown 2011

In a case of tragic irony…
Cyclists are continuing to be penalized for such heinous offenses as running red lights in auto-free times in Central Park and “not riding in the bike lane,” during the NYPD’s crackdown 2011.

Meanwhile Motorists are continuing to kill and seriously maim pedestrians and bikers with such acts as, driving without a licenses, operated a vehicle intoxicated and fleeing the scene of an accident.

on Monday a 35 year old fashion stylist, Laurence Renard was run over by a unlicensed driver while crossing the street on the Upper East Side.

From the Daily News:
French fashion stylist Laurence Renard killed in horrific East Side rush-hour accident

BY Meredith Bennett-Smith and James Fanelli

Tuesday, January 25th 2011, 4:00 AM
A French fashion stylist who worked with photographer Bruce Weber was fatally hit by a dump truck on Monday in a horrific rush-hour accident on the upper East Side, police said.

Laurence Renard, 35, was crossing First Ave. right outside her building about 5:45 p.m. when a private carting truck turning from 90th St. struck her.

read more here.

Yesterday a food delivery rider was sent to the hospital in critical condition, involved in a hit and run.

Reported on in the New York Time’s:
Hit-and-Run Driver Injures Cyclist Near Times Square
January 29, 2011, 3:56 pm

A food deliveryman was seriously injured by a hit-and-run driver who struck his bicycle from behind near Times Square about 10:15 p.m. Friday, the police said.

The victim, Ricardo Gonzalez, 28, was thrown under a second vehicle that was double-parked. He was listed in critical condition on Saturday at Bellevue Hospital Center.

Officers arrested a driver who they said had been involved in the accident a few blocks away. They identified him as Clark Gettinger, 40, of 300 West 59th Street.

The police said Mr. Gettinger was traveling north on Eighth Avenue in a 2001 Lexus when his car struck Mr. Gonzalez, who had crossed 47th Street and was pedaling up the right side of the avenue.

Read the rest of the article here.

Charlie Komanoff, life long advocate for safer streets wrote this piece in Streetsblog, talking about how the public’s opinions are often shrouded in ignorance and tend to blame the victim instead of taking a critical look at statistics such as private dump trucks have the number one pedestrian kill rate.

Response to NYC Traffic Violence Rooted in Ignorance

by Charles Komanoff on January 25, 2011

Even with New York City pedestrian deaths dropping in recent years, there’s no end in sight to the horror from driver-caused deaths, and little letup in police fecklessness and politicians’ and media grandstanding on traffic dangers.

Unmentioned by police, elected officials or the media in coverage of recent traffic deaths: Private dump trucks have the highest pedestrian kill rate in NYC. Photo: DNAinfo/Jennifer Glickel

This morning brought news of the death of Laurence Renard yesterday evening on the Upper East Side. The 35-year-old French fashion stylist was crushed under a dump truck that turned from 90th Street onto First Avenue and into her path. While details are sketchy, as usual, Renard presumably had the right-of-way over the turning truck, which a witness said “came around the corner like a bat out of hell.” Nevertheless, the only charge filed thus far is for driving with a suspended license.

read more here.

Meanwhile in these tragic times, writer Aaron Naperstek notes in his blog, we need the NYPD to release more statistical information about such events:

Mayor Bloomberg should be publicly challenged to create a public health strategy to sharply reduce deaths and injuries from motor vehicles. This means telling the police department to climb out of their bunker of secrecy and obstructionism. The Health Department and the DOT are already deeply engaged in efforts to change things. The police are not. Not only do they refuse to engage in a public discussion about this street safety, they impede overall efforts by refusing to share crash records they have compiled at public expense.

read the rest of Aaron’s comments here.

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