NEW YORK—New York Police Department’s 78th precinct has issued 16 summons to drivers for failing to yield to pedestrians in the last four days.
“Failure to yield is the top cause of pedestrian injuries,” Council member Brad Lander said in a statement.
This comes after a month of meetings by the Park Slope Street Safety Partnership, a group formed to create a discussion between the community and Lander’s office on street safety.
The result was an undercover operation. One undercover police officer would walk through an intersection, and another officer would issue summons to drivers who failed to yield. The pedestrians, officers or not, had the right of way.
“Drivers should know that the next pedestrian you fail to yield to may be an undercover cop,” Lander stated. “Deputy Inspector Michael Ameri and the 78th Precinct are showing how the NYPD can be a leader in making Vision Zero a reality.”
According to Lander’s office, 44 percent of pedestrians who are hit while crossing at a crosswalk are walking during the walk signal. When pedestrians are killed or seriously injured, 27 percent of the time it’s a result of failure to yield.
The precinct plans to continue this operation in the neighborhood.
Vision Zero, Mayor Bill de Blasio’s initiative to curb pedestrian deaths within a decade, includes several parts.
Last October, the 76th and 78th precincts issued zero speeding tickets compared to the 77 issued in the neighboring 77th precinct. The news came as a shock after three recent pedestrian deaths in the area. The precinct, which had given 604 summons for moving violations, including distracted driving, pointed out that speed was not the factor in those collisions.
Speeding, distracted driving, and failure to yield are all highly deadly traffic violations, said Paul Steely White, executive director of Transportation Alternatives. “We need more enforcement actions like this around the five boroughs to make it clear that New York City is on the path to achieve Mayor de Blasio’s goal of Vision Zero,” he stated.