A car hit a woman pushing a stroller across West End Avenue on Friday morning, witnesses told us. The woman had the walk sign, a witness said. According to one witness:
A 40-yr old woman was pushing a child in a stroller west-bound across West End Avenue on 74th St. An east-bound car was traveling on 74th from Riverside Dr and took a left turn on to West End, heading north. The woman and stroller were in the crosswalk (with the walk sign) when the car was trying to turn left. The car hit the woman. She was able to get up, and seemed shaken but not critically hurt. The stroller didn’t look like it got hit, and the child seemed fine (she was young, maybe 1 year old or so? so didn’t really know what was happening).
The woman got up and was bleeding a bit from the mouth, but seemed otherwise okay. Police were called immediately (and arrived promptly thereafter), and the driver had stopped and pulled over. Seemed like the driver was potentially a professional driver (was driving a black car/sedan) and was carrying two passengers in the back seat.
Another witness told us that the baby “looked to be fine” and that the mother was taken away in an ambulance. Captain Michael Falcon of the 20th precinct said the woman suffered minor injuries and there were no charges filed against the driver.
Terrifying. What is wrong with people?! If this woman had the light when crossing the street with a child, the driver should be named and shamed, charged with a misdemeanor under Intro 238, and certainly lose his employment as a commercial driver. Come on, 20th Precinct.
“…no charges filed against the driver”.
How do we expect this almost surreal situation ever to end? Can anyone explain why failure to yield is not, at the very least, a moving violation?
Failing to yield is a 2 point + fine moving violation.
More than that, injuring a pedestrian or cyclist with the right of way is a misdemeanor and the driver is supposed to be ARRESTED for it. But they never have been, not once, since the law went into effect because NYPD declines to do so.
Sad this is almost happening daily.
Safest pedestrian city in the US. Only neurotics lament everyday statistics as being a cause to morally preen over, as if they are angels and the rest of society beasts. No, that’s not a righteous outlook, it’s traffic hypochondria. Look at young people at sidewalk cafes downtown where it’s much more dangerous than the UWS. They are smiling, chatting, laughing, planning, celebrating, gossiping, and testing new wines. Now look at yourselves, complaining and being outraged about yet another randomly chaotic season as if bad things merit big social changes, as if mere mistakes should become crimes, as if drivers are just carelessly plowing into people while sober, because you say so, you who judge them from your couches. Social activism has become an excuse for neurotics to avoid the therapy needed for them to stop turning people into criminals just for making a mistake while driving. The real and sane social contract is that the risks are acceptable in return for the convenience of cars. Were the driver drunk or driving recklessly, it would be of real concern, only.
Didn’t the driver “carelessly plow” into a person?
Perhaps if (God forbid) someone you cared enough about were ever to become one of those “everyday statistics”, you might not be quite so cavalier.
Regardless, couldn’t you at least exhibit a little more grace and charity when addressing all of us “traffic hypochondria”-afflicted “neurotics”?
After all, not everyone can be the exemplar of mental and social well-adjustedness that you so clearly are.
If it were a mistake for doing anything else but driving, it would be a crime.
It is great that we are one of the safest pedestrian cities, but that doesnt mean we can’t be safer. It is not part of the social contract to have these risks. It is part of the social contract that someone driving a potentially lethal weapon will treat it as such. A pedestrian in a crosswalk with the light has the right of way, and violating the right of way is against the law. Hitting someone while they have the right of way is injuring someone while breaking the law and therefore should be punished severely. And before you start calling me an arm chair activist, or an anti car person – I’m a driver.
Re NicFromNYC’s comment: While we may be the safest city for pedestrians in the U.S., we don’t do nearly as well as other cities that have concentrated on reducing pedestrian injuries and deaths, especially through engineering. Beyond that, as both a driver and pedestrian, I see drivers turning unnecessarily in front of pedestrians, speeding and taking other risks all the time in New York City, with no penalty whatsoever. It’s silly to act like it’s chicken-little time, as you suggest those interested in safer streets are doing, when there are thousands of pedestrians hurt on city streets every year.
In San Fran, I’m always shocked by how diligent the drivers are in yielding to pedestrians. NYers seem to tolerate aggressive, dangerous driving from both a legal (no arrests) and cultural perspective, and for some reason drivers feel no shame for coming dangerously close to peds in cross walks, running red lights, and just generally being obnoxious. Why don’t the NY traffic cops spend more time addressing dangerous drivers and less time towing and handing out tickets?
Note: Other cities outside the U.S., that is.
Exactly. Compared to other world capitals, our street safety record is terrible.
Something must be done. Too many people are hurt in this city every day.
Thanks for covering this.
Incredible. I got a $300 fine and a reckless driving ticket on 110th st. and I didn’t touch a person, pet or thing. I guess it actually pays to run someone down!
Wow this is really endless.
No one cares. Everybody speeds and J walks and no cars are ever held responsible.
We have sold our souls to wheel large and small.
There are just too many people in the city. It’s really more out of hand now than before. I drive and I live in the city and walk. So I see both sides. It’s really getting too crowded!!!
I’m totally flummoxed by the fact that in all these “incidents” in the neighborhood not one single person has apparently been fined or jailed. Is it no longer the responsibility of the driver to use the utmost of caution to avoid pedestrians? And shouldn’t “professional” drivers be held to an even higher standard? Many, if not most of these events have involved taxis or livery cars. It seems to me that any time they are involved in any sort of accident they should be put on some sort of probation, at the very least, and an appropriate inquiry should occur to determine if they are truly fit to continue spending their days driving amongst pedestrians. Plus, anyone involved in an incident (I hate to say accident, as sometimes the particularly aggressive nature of some drivers appears to be anything but accidental) involving a pedestrian should at least be met with some sort of summons, or at the very least some sort of driving re-education.
Why no charges?
OMG, on several occasions this year, I was nearly hit at that very corner, where cars — especially cabs — are hell-bent on turning before the light changes. I never cross against the light there, but it’s still like crossing at the Indie 500. We should have traffic cameras up and down WEA.
WHAT? No charges filed against driver? What is going on?
Charges are, more or less, never filed against drivers, even if you kill someone.
At this point, I am a careful driver because I don’t want to hurt anyone, not because I am afraid of consequences. Problem is, most people only respond to consequences.
Why is this?
You got me. It doesn’t make sense. It is always just deemed an accident, even though nothing is truly an accident unless everyone involved was doing absolutely nothing wrong. Which is probably never the case.
But if you look at NYCs history, the only time sober drivers are charged are if 1) they leave the scene (which is not even always true based on the recent news coverage of the cyclist who was the victim of a hit and run and witnesses not only got the license plate, but also told NYPD where the car was parked minutes later and the police said they were too busy) or if 2) it is 100% intentional such as trying to run over your ex girlfriend.
Every other lethal accident does not even result in a slap on the wrist, let alone actual consequences.
The Driver pulled over and waited for the Police while an ambulance came for the struck woman?
That Driver is a Monster, he should be locked up for making a mistake and then handling it responsibly !
He’s a Nazi!
Dave, that’s a disgusting comment on so many levels that I don’t know where to start. That’s great that the driver pulled over AFTER HITTING A MOTHER PUSHING A STROLLER THROUGH A CROSSWALK WITH THE LIGHT. The fact that he pulled over does not dismiss the point that he was wrong, and should be punished. I bet that you have at least a mother, if not a significant other and or child, and how would you feel if it was a member of your family – maybe a grandchild – that could have been killed thanks to a careless driver? When I’m turning I LOOK EVERYWHERE BEFORE TURNING, ESPECIALLY IN THE CROSSWALK, and I’ve NEVER had an accident yet. Sure, maybe it’s cost me an extra 5 mins of drive time to be cautious, but far better than killing anyone. I won’t even address the anti-semitic nature of your comment. It’s really disgusting and ignorant and you should be ashamed of yourself on so many levels.
Some drivers act like they are entitled to do whatever they want and have an “I’m in NYC so anything goes” mentality. I regularly see cars speed up and down WEA and treat traffic lights and speed limits with impunity. If you have the audacity to confront them and tell them their endangering children and the elderly they answer with choice 4 letter words. Most people living in this neighborhood are pedestrians. Treat us with respect and follow the rules to keep it safe for everyone.
They have that mentality for one simple reason: they can. And when our elected officials finally get around to doing something about it, like Cooper’s law and the other host of laws passed under Vision Zero, NYPD can’t be bothered to actually enforce them.
So the short answer is: they can because no one will stop them even if they kill someone.
Being a pedestrian and driver in NYC I would have to say that Pedestrain New Yorkers are not the best at waiting for the light to change. I have be behind the wheel many times, when someone decided to run across the street and i would have to brake to prevent an accident. I know we are all busy, but we have to learn to wait sometimes.
Crossing the street in NYC is really scary. No matter how careful you are, drivers always seem to ignore pedestrians as if we don’t exist.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen drivers just blow through red lights or try to beat the light before it turns red. Also, so many drivers who obviously should know they are not going to “make the light” stop in the crosswalk forcing pedestrians into on-coming traffic.
Worst of all is the driver who sees another driver stop to let pedestrians cross the street and them barrels at breakneck speed to pass the stopped vehicle.
Hmmm…let’s see. Badly bruised? check. Cuts in several places? check. Front teeth chipped and mouth bloody? check. Emotionally scarred? check. Taken to the ER in an ambulance? check. Luckily the baby was protected by the stroller absorbing most of the impact. I suppose those are “minor” injuries given what could have happened. FYI…the reason I know these things…IT WAS MY WIFE AND DAUGHTER! I appreciate the sympathetic comments from everyone. It has been a tough few days. I am deeply saddened by the fact that striking a pedestrian with a vehicle whether through true accident or gross negligence is not something worthy of charging an individual with. An SI ferry driver crashes into the dock or tour bus operator hits another tour bus and it makes the front page of every paper in town. Operators of those vehicles were charged granted they were found to be under the influence of drugs/alcohol, but the driver in this incident was never tested. He gave a statement and went on his merry way.
I’m sorry for your family.
I would suggest you contact Steve Vaccaro of Vaccaro and White to discuss the case. He is THE name in cycling and pedestrian litigation. If you want something done, he is the one to make it happen.
(Note: I have no affiliation with him or his law firm)
PCB, A new law went into effect in August that makes what happened to your wife (hitting a pedestrian in the crosswalk) a crime. Please call the police and tell them you want to make a criminal complaint under NY administrative code Section 19-190. The police should have the contact information of the driver and should be able to pursue this, even though they may be unaware of the law since it is new.