“We are all committed to Vision Zero,” Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer said last week. “We need to stand up when people are killed or hurt because of reckless driving.”
In one of his first acts as mayor, Bill de Blasio launched the Vision Zero initiative, a collaboration between the Police Department, Department of Transportation, Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) and Taxi and Limousine Commission to make city streets safer.
In 2014, there have already been 11 people killed in accidents, seven being pedestrians.
The group’s report, which will be submitted to the mayor on Feb.15, will be the blueprint for the city’s’ plan to reduce traffic-related deaths. According to DOHMH, being struck by a car is the leading cause of injury-related death for children younger than 14, and the second leading cause injury-related deaths among senior citizens.
Van Bramer’s office has created a list of some of the most dangerous intersections on Northern Boulevard. They include:
Northern Boulevard between 61st Street and 62nd Street, where eight-year-old Noshat Nahian was killed in December;
Northern Boulevard at the intersection of 54th Street and Broadway;
Northern Boulevard, 51st Street, and Newtown Road
Northern Boulevard and 48th Street;
Northern Boulevard, Steinway, and 39th Street
Van Bramer said that many people drive on Northern Boulevard at dangerous speeds because of its width and multiple lanes.
“This is incredibly important,” he said. “It is no secret that Northern Boulevard is one of the city’s most dangerous roadways.”
A new report from the Tri-State Transportation Campaign found that Northern Boulevard was one of the deadliest roadways in the tri-state region; five pedestrians were killed between 2010 and 2012.
“With the horrific accidents we’ve seen here in Queens just in the past month, elected officials and community leaders couldn’t be more united behind the mayor’s Vision Zero initiative,” said Assemblywoman Marge Markey said. “What happened at this intersection is yet another reminder of the dangers that pedestrians face from irresponsible drivers.”
According to recent reports, 286 people died on New York City streets in 2013, and nearly 55,000 people were injured. Queens had the greatest number of traffic deaths, with 93 people killed, including 52 pedestrians.
Celia Holl Castellan of Transportation Alternatives is glad elected officials are supporting safer streets in Woodside.
“Northern Boulevard is one of the most egregious speedways in Queens,” she said. “It needs attention from Vision Zero.”