While the Vision Zero program introduced by Mayor de Blasio has resulted in a decline in the number of New York City traffic deaths, the total number of collisions has increased, along with the injury rate. These findings are based on data supplied by the New York Police Department (NYPD).
As reported by the New York Post, from 2014 to 2018, accidents in the Big Apple increased over 11 percent. In 2018, there were 228,227 collisions reported, up from 205,486 in 2014.
There was also an 18 percent uptick in collision-related injuries. Last year saw 44,508 injuries in comparison to 37,556 in 2014.
There is some small measure of good news: Pedestrian deaths have declined overall, yet still were slightly higher in 2018 (111) than in 2017 (106).
According to the de Blasio administration, the lower death rate can be attributed to actions taken through Vision Zero. The goal of the city’s program is to have zero traffic deaths by expanding citywide services to combat unsafe driving.
The spokesperson for the Transportation Alternatives group said, “As the city has become more congested, you have more blocked intersections and more irritable drivers. You have more tension on the streets so, of course, you’re going to have more crashes.”
Congested streets are likely to continue as the norm, as there have been marked increases in registrations for private for-hire autos, the spokesperson for AAA notes.
However, a federal Department of Transportation (DOT) spokesperson was quick to reassure the public that NYC streets are safer, saying, “Conditions are measurably safer for the most vulnerable street users.”
Of course, if you are one of those injured New York City residents, those words may have a hollow ring to them. Pedestrians, passengers and other motorists whose injuries were the fault of a negligent driver may decide to pursue compensation for their injuries and other damages.