Nov. 4, 2021 By Christian Murray (Updated)
A bicyclist was fatally struck by the driver of a box truck in Sunnyside Wednesday, police said.
Qiang Tu, 58, of Forest Hills, was riding his bicycle westbound on 47th Avenue at around 8:35 a.m. when he was struck by a box truck driver who was traveling on 47th Avenue in the same direction and hit him while turning onto 47th Street.
The trucker was driving with a suspended license.
The police were called to the scene and discovered Tu unconscious and unresponsive with severe injuries. He was transported to NYC Health + Hospitals/Elmhurst where he was pronounced dead.
The driver, 33-year-old Shakai Waye of Newark, NJ, remained on the scene but was arrested and charged with Aggravated Unlicensed Operator. He was driving a 2015 Freightliner M21 Box Truck at the time of the crash.
The bike advocacy group Transportation Alternatives issued a statement condemning the mayor for the crash.
“Qiang Tu’s life could have been saved if Mayor de Blasio prioritized people over parking,” said Juan Restrepo, Senior Organizer and Queens Organizer at Transportation Alternatives.
“While there is a bike boulevard and three different protected bike lanes north of Queens Boulevard, the southern section of Sunnyside only has sharrows and painted bike lanes, offering no protection to residents commuting through the area. This area needs a comprehensive safety plan that will provide protected bike lanes connecting to the Kosciuszko Bridge, along the industrial corridor, and through popular bike thoroughfares like 47th Avenue. Saving lives should come before saving parking spots.”
I’m sure the bicyclist was at fault.
A very sad and shocking news. I believe the victim is my classmate in Tsinghua University of China. I lost contact with him many years ago. But I knew he moved to US about 20 years ago.
The driver of a truck was driving with a suspended license and killed somebody. The driver was only charged with driving with a suspended license.
This city is normalizing running over cyclists with your car and getting away scott-free.
Not at all. They must investigate first.
Is it even remotely possible the cyclist did something the driver couldn’t anticipate and therefore put himself in danger? Was he riding in the vehicle’s blind spot? Did he do everything possible to protect himself in the dangerous situation he put himself in.? How do parking spots have anything to do with this?
The sudden, jerky maneuvers from many if not most cyclists, as if they own the entire road IS a contributing factor in many cyclist’s fates.
I hope we get to ask the same questions when your family is plowed by an unlicensed box truck driver.
I would love the toxic anti-bike lane folks who are constantly frothing at the mouth about bike infrastructure to try to defend this.
This is what happens when you fight against bike lanes. People die.
Is a few parking spots really worth the life of Qiang Tu and countless others who are at risk daily just trying to get around? Add protected bike lanes now!
Do you really think a bit of paint on the road would have prevented this tragedy?
Do you really think some idiot who drives a truck with a suspended licence would respect aforementioned paint on the road (aka bike lanes?)
Meanwhile over at the hate group’s page they are-
1. Reposting posts by a guy literally named Carr who is protesting a traffic light to responses about the traffic light being a blight on the historic district.
2. Posting screenshots of pictures of Julie Won’s victory party while deriding a photographed local community board member and canvasser who favours bike lanes.
3. In the comments on recent posts an anti-bike extremist proposes draconian regulations to limit cycling, all to the glee of other extremist commenters.
Taken together, between extremist views, uncorrected lies by commenters, naming of prominent officials and pro-cycling residents and promoting conspiracy theories, it is an alarming call to violence by Queens Streets for All. Those who thought they would bugger off after losing another election should brace themselves for more violence. Julie Won should hire security to defend against this seedy element.
No one should drive without a license. Society depends on box trucks for all kinds of things. Whether he was licensed or not trucks have huge blind spots on their right side. It is taught in every drivers ed course that trucks can’t see you if you are passing on their right side. Do they teach that in bike ed courses, too? I hope so.
Your mind is dangerously warped.
And yet you’re the one who started a bonafide hate group! Oops?
This is what happens when you pass a truck on the right.
Behave themselves on the road and obey the traffic laws everyone else has to. Pedestrians have to obey the law, too!!!
Bicyclists, Sir, are the ones who have turned the long held rules of the road inside out and upside down. People died in road accidents back in the Stone Age for God’s sake. And since the Stone Age people have been pretty successfully inventing new and improved ways to move themselves, other people me all manner of stuff around the world. Only cyclists seem to use ultra-super-duper tunnel vision to say all these improvements are nothing but devious, devil-driven attempts to kill those on the road with less tonnage. Many, many of you have slurped up this story, but TA admits in its own printed materials that they made their current strategy up to force a change they wanted. I call them cowards. They could have put their considerable energy and skill into changing laws that allowed oil and auto companies to continue reaping profits by building fossil-fueled powered vehicles of all kinds. But, no. it is so much easier but to attack individual people leading modest, individual lives with the tools society has supplied them with. And slather the roads with toxic smelling paint in such large quantities that it still wafts into my fourth floor window weeks after it was burned down. This is not about one person illegally doing so job and another thoughtlessly moving into a deadly situation. This is age old and world wide. Leave your neighbors alone. They are doing the best they can. Focus higher than the gutter.
“Qiang Tu’s life could have been saved if Mayor de Blasio prioritized people over parking,” said Juan Restrepo, Senior Organizer and Queens Organizer at Transportation Alternatives….no Mr. Restrepo, it was not de Blasio’s fault, it was the unlicensed driver. Stop using a tragedy to push your unwelcome and unpopular agenda.
“unwelcome and unpopular agenda”
Julie Won got took 76% of the District 26 vote, buddy
Almost no one voted. Your hatred of people who don’t like bicycles taking over the way people move on public streets is the product of an unhinged mind
Where have you been?
He loves cyclists.
Convert 47th Ave and 48th Ave to one-way operation – like skillman & 43 ave – and add protected bike lanes.
Demolish 7 train make it all bike lane!
Another killing by a reckless motorist. His life could have been saved by proper infrastructure, but then people would have to pay money to store their private property!
This is awful.
Doubtless the cult of car members will be here blaming the cyclist any minute. Take a long, hard look at yourself.
“Doubtless the cult of car members”….a man died because of an illegal operation a of a vehicle. I suggest YOU do some self reflection.
Please consult the comments of those in your company, blaming the cyclist.
My condolences to the victim’s loved ones.
Very sad indeed.
However this happened, the onus is on the operator of a motor vehicle to yield to any other road users including bicyclists and pedestrians.
The driving stamdards in this city have absolutely plummeted since I first got my license in the 80s. I’m starting to think licenses are sold in bodegas along with scratch cards these days.