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De Blasio Goes to Scene Where Woodside Boy Was Killed, Signs 11 Traffic Safety Bills

June 24, 2014, By Michael Florio

Mayor Bill de Blasio’s pledge to combat pedestrian casualties moved another step forward when he signed a package of 11 traffic safety bills at PS 152 in Woodside yesterday, near the street where an 8-year-old local boy was killed by a tractor-trailer.

The new laws essentially aim to clamp down on reckless driving and speeding that the city claims contribute to the death of 250 pedestrians in New York City every year.

The laws include lowering the speed limit near 50 schools; prohibiting stunts by motorcyclists; establishing penalties for drivers who fail to yield to pedestrians and bicyclists; and firing cabbies who kill or injure someone while violating the traffic code.

The 11 bills, along with legislation that was passed in Albany last week that empowers the City to reduce the default speed limit from 30 to 25 miles per hour, will make the streets safer, de Blasio said at the signing.

“The default speed limit of 25 miles per hour is a huge step forward for New York City,” he said. “Vision Zero fundamentally comes down to reducing speeding and reckless driving and this is a central element to that plan to protect our people.”

The new laws also call for the introduction of more slow zones around the city.

The parents of Noshat Nahian, the 8-year-old boy who was struck while walking across Northern Boulevard at 61st Street on his way to school, attended the signing.

Since the tragedy, the intersection has been redesigned. The city has added pedestrian islands and changed the traffic signals so that people have more time to cross. De Blasio said that other dangerous intersections would be overhauled.

DOT is currently working with the community to bring similar improvements to Northern Blvd between 62nd and 102nd Streets.

“These bills will help reduce crashes and save lives,” said Department of Transportation Commissioner Polly Trottenberg, who was at the signing.

NYPD Chief of Transportation Thomas Chan said that each precinct will be keeping a close eye on the dangerous intersections in their respective sectors– and will work with the DOT to implement these bills.

Chan said that the NYPD has already stepped up its level of traffic enforcement on local streets this year—issuing 14% more tickets/summons this year, compared to the same period last year.

Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer lauded de Blasio’s initiative and said that there have been far too many pedestrian fatalities—such as Noshat Nahian’s— in the Western Queens area over the past two years.

For instance, Luis Bravo, 19, was killed in a hit and run on Broadway and 58th Street last September, as was Kumar Ragunath, 64, in March at Northern Blvd and 40th Road.

Tenzin Drudak, 16, was hit and killed while waiting to cross Thomas Ave on his way to school.

Van Bramer said today’s announcement makes the city closer to its mission of zero traffic fatalities.

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22 Comments

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South Side Johnny

People are walking around, naturally, and waiting until the corner is not natural, so they cross in between. Cars are not natural and they go to fast and run over people. Cars are machines and need to be regulated but people should be most important. I am scared since so many cars and motorcycles go fast whenever they can, and make loud aggressive motor sounds. More red lights, more stop signs, lower speed limit, bigger sidewalks, and make more areas for people only- NO CARS ALLOWED. Then you will see fewer deaths by vehicles.

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tourniquet

@South Side Johnny
You can’t be serious. This is not a one-sided argument. This area is full of reckless pedestrians! I deal with them daily on 48th Ave. (Adults and children alike). I can only imagine how much worse it is on a major road like Queens Blvd. Regulating the drivers is good but pedestrians also need to learn how to cross the street properly. I know how ridiculous that sounds but its true. People dart into the street without looking, they walk while playing with their phone, etc. Things will only get better if both “sides” make an effort to be safer.

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SuperWittySmitty

But so many of the residents DID chime in and expressed doubt over this. You seem to be the only one who a) is up at this time; and b) knows that it’s an area frequently by drug dealers and prostitutes. Sorry if I can’t take you seriously.

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South Side Johnny

Motor vehicles need traffic rules because they’re dangerous and can kill. People walking are behaving naturally and shouldn’t have to worry about lanes and straight lines the same way. That’s silly. It’s the vehicles that are driving recklessly and injuring people- claiming it’s the fault of pedestrians is really lame.

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Sunnysider

I knew that would be the response from super witty about the drug dealing. You must live in a bubble! Talk to anyone who has been living in this neigherhood a long time and they may educate you. 48th street and 48th avenue has been a drug haven for the last 30 years or more. Take your walk around Sunnyside on a Friday or Saturday night at 3 am and it may open your eyes. While you are walking around speak to the taxi drivers, bar tenders . See what they have to say about the situation. Start your walk at 44th street on greenpoint down to 48th ave and back up 48th street to greenpoint avenue and then down greenpont to 44th street. Let me know what you see. Have a nice walk

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SuperWittySmitty

A couple of weeks ago the conversation was regarding a “hot spot” of prostitution on Greenpoint Avenue between 43rd and 46th street, as reported by the Daily News. No one believed you because many of us have lived in this neighborhood for years and years and have never seen this.

Now someone complains about the “huge drug dealing issue and loitering” on 49th street and you think people will start believing you? Sorry, old timer, that’s not going to happen. The report was fallacious, as were your claims that you’ve seen prostitutes working this strip.

I’m going to check 49th and 48th street tonight, undercover. I’ll see if there is really “drug-dealing” going on. Probably it’s just the community enjoying the summer evening.

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Sunnysider

@md. Finally someone recognizes the problems around 48 and 49 th streets. I mentioned a couple of weeks ago about the prostitutes and most people thought they didn’t exist and didn’t want to believe it. Same way with the drugs. People don’t want to accept that’s it’s happening in Sunnyside. Let’s clean up Sunnyside for good! ( can’t wait to see the comments tomorrow )

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Barry

Why the hell is an 8 year old walking across queens blvd by themself going to school????? 8 f..NG years old? Who’s the stupid one here????
And Van Bramer when are we going to get this guy out of here? Clueless absolutely clueless.

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Crane

MD, can you just report that drug dealing to someone and make a record of it and then escalate if nothing is done, surely IA would love to hear about a precinct that does not act on this type of complaints.
There is also an increasing amount of graffiti, especially on the 7 train overpasses, they also recently tagged (more like crapped) all over bunch of stores gates, even I saw they sprayed all over someone’s window. There is also increasing amount of noisy motorcycles and youngsters that look up to no good.

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md

Yesterday a truck ran over one of my neighbors dog on queens blvd and 50th street in front of PC Richards and barely missed the 7 year old girl chasing the dog in the street……luckily she wasnt hit…. The point is if we were to have the intersections had speeding cameras, drivers would be more cautious. And when is the huge drug dealing issue and loitering on 49th street to be addressed? You have to be blind and deaf not to notice!

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Celtic Bark

There are certainly a lot of bad drivers out there but there are also a lot of stupid pedestrians who walk right out into the middle of the street without looking, cross against the light, cross the street while texting etc…

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JOR

@Hoof You can’t judge the Mayor by his actions you idiot, he can only be judge by his intentions. Didn’t you learn that when he sprung his Reverand Friend, donor and unlicensed diver, from the hoosegow?

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Hoof Hearted

I wonder if Di Blasio’s drivers have any intention of obeying the new speed limit.

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Crane

I agree with “me”. Just showing up there for 10 minutes does not make things better, they just show up and smile for the cameras while it is just another day in their datebook. Nothing else.
I agree that cars go extremely fast on queens blvd, why can’t they put those cameras on queens blvd to catch those and put big signs saying speed camera enforced and catch them, no, they don’t want to do that, because if they do, everyone will slow down and then traffic will suffer, they do not want traffic to suffer because our subway system cannot handle more people, traffic has to keep moving.
Do you know how many times people blow red lights and just keep rolling on queens blvd without even slowing down?! A LOT. Where are the red light cameras? Non.

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me

in response to Oldschool Sunnysider – you are 100% correct I have watched elderly people with canes or walkers THINK they’re gonna beat the lights or stupid parents standing on the sidewalk while they push their strollers onto the street or mom /dad crossing the blvd from the middle with kids in tow – it’s the responsibility of both PEDESTRIANS AND DRIVERS to obey the laws and when that happens these senseless deaths will be avoided!

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Cris

I believe the new bills will be helpful, especially close to schools. However I think one of the main issues that’s contributing to the number of accidents has not been properly addressed and it has to do with the increasing number of bikers (not only commercial) and pedestrians crossing the streets on the red light. Laws need to be enforced on all sides to make our streets and neighborhoods safer.

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Zero the Hero

Once again, what good will dropping the speed limit 5 miles an hour do when people already drive double the posted speed limit? Instead of doing 60 in a 30 they’ll do 50 in a 25 MPH zone? If they were serious about this they can just drop the speed limit to 15 mph and anyone caught doing over 35 mph in that zone would face an automatic licence as far as I can tell from the vehicle and traffic law of new york state. Of course this would mean that the officer issuing the ticket wouldn’t let the driver please bargin a guilty plea for a reduced speed and amount of points against their licence.

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Dov pincus

Where was the adult supervision while this 8 year old was walking to school?..Northern blvd? Rush hour traffic?

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me

Now that Mayor DeBlasio and Councilman Van Bramer are soaking up their 10 minutes of fame again – did either of them ever walk down Queens blvd say starting at 49th St on Queens Blvd. (in front of Van Bramers offices) all the way to the LIRR – I haven’t seen one single speed limit sign that even said 30 mph – Councilman Van Bramer you have never noticed this at all???? this is YOUR community – and just what extra cops (now that Deblasio refuses to hire anymore) are going to ticket drivers going over 25mph? -and does that include the bikers also??? If you stand out on QB at 6am cars are traveling at least 50 mph. once again another nonsensical grandstanding ploy.

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Oldschool Sunnysider

Not a single word on the neglect and recklessness of pedestrians.
Not a word about enforcing jaywalking laws.
Pedestrians have to be held responsible when their illegal and dangerous actions cause accidents, injury and loss of life.

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JOReilly

Hopefully, the new laws will be given greater enforcement attention than is given to the laws passed to regulate commercial pedal bikes and to put teeth into the ban on e-bikes, each enacted with similar fan fare as protective safety legislation but mostly ignored.

Reply

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