A recent fatal accident on the Lower East Side involving a 12-year-old girl has reignited safety concerns for the problem traffic area. The accident illustrates the inherent dangers of pedestrian accidents while trying to safely navigate New York's busy streets.
Intersection of Delancey and Clinton
The girl - who was on her way to a donut shop with friends for an after school snack - was struck by a minivan when the traffic light turned green as she bent down to pick up her dropped bookbag at the intersection of Delancey and Clinton. The girl was tragically pronounced dead on arrival after being rushed to Downtown Beekman Hospital.
Police are considering this event as a tragic accident, but how many accidents have to occur before something is done in this neighborhood to prevent further accidents?
Delancey Street has had its fair share of accidents. In fact according to Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer, the nearby intersection of Delancey and Essex has accounted for 523 car accidents between 2008 and 2010. Moreover, according to Transportation Alternatives, more than 130 pedestrians and bicyclists have been struck on Delancey during the same period.
Stringer has joined in the call for an immediate review of Delancey Street by the Department of Transportation. Some of the ideas being proposed to increase safety on Delancey Street include expanding medians, improving pedestrian signage, and probably most important, increasing pedestrian crossing times - locals have told a Manhattan local news provider, DNAInfo, that the traffic light where this particular accident occurred is too short.
Unfortunately for New Yorkers, these types of accidents are all too common on the streets of NYC. It is up to all of us - drivers and pedestrians alike - to help prevent these accidents through proper precautions, sufficiently safe crosswalk design and common-sense.