2021 has Shown Most Traffic-Related Deaths Since 2014
More pedestrians, drivers, and cyclists in New York City died in traffic-related deaths since January than the first six month of any other year since Mayor Bill de Blasio took office, despite the mayor’s launching, in 2014, of Vision Zero, whose purpose is to reduce deaths on roadways to zero by 2024.
Cars that strike pedestrians and cyclists is the leading cause of injury-related death for children under 14, and the second leading cause for seniors, according to NYC’s Vision Zero Website.
A total of 124 of New Yorkers of all ages have died in traffic-related accidents from Jan. 1 to June 30, 2021, according to bicycle and pedestrian advocates at Transportation Alternatives.
Hit-and-runs have particularly spiked, said the new report, which said that the 47 hit and runs that took place in the first six months of 2021 is a higher number than any since month period since the NYPD starting keeping track in 2015.
Of the 47 hit-and-runs in which drivers fled crash scenes, the NYPD made just 11 arrests, the report said.
“More people are dying on Mayor de Blasio’s streets because he failed to quickly and aggressively scale the safety solutions of Vision Zero: instead of choosing to deliver piecemeal projects and unfulfilled promises,” director Danny Harris, the director of Transportation Alternatives, told the New York Post, which tried to reach the mayor for comment.
A City Hall spokesman, however, instead, directed The Post to the mayor’s answer to the tragic record-setting number of pedestrian deaths to his comments 19 days ago.
“What went wrong is COVID,” said the mayor, hearkening to his longtime scapegoat for the city’s skyrocketing crime numbers.
“We saw [Vision Zero] radically reduced crashes and injuries and deaths,” Mayor de Blasio had said on WNYC. “Along comes COVID, and just like with our efforts to fight violence for six years: COVID unglued everything.”
Instead of blaming the pandemic, the advocacy group Transportation Alternatives has urged the mayor to use his final five months in office to quickly redesign the city’s streets to redistribute, more safely, the space that is currently designated for cars, pedestrians, and bike lanes.