Bicyclist Critically Injured After Being Hit by Delivery Truck Near 72nd Street

By Carol Tannenhauser

An unidentified male cyclist in his 20s was hit by a truck and critically injured at 72nd Street and Broadway on Tuesday night shortly after 10 p.m.

The man was hit by a delivery truck traveling north on Broadway, according to Martin Burgess, who witnessed the crash. He apparently was hit near the Vitamin Shoppe between 71st and 72nd and was dragged to a spot in front of Gray’s Papaya at the corner of the block, according to Burgess.

“The cyclist was pinned under the rear wheels. He was alive when the ambulance arrived, but he was in pretty bad shape,” Burgess wrote.

Police say the call came in at 10:16 p.m. The injured man was taken to St. Luke’s Hospital in critical but stable condition.

A police spokesman said no arrests were made, but an investigation is ongoing.

Correction: We initially reported that it was a FreshDirect truck, but FreshDirect was not involved.

NEWS | 24 comments | permalink
    1. Jen says:

      WSR, please keep us posted about the person’s condition if you can. That is a very sad story and I just hope he is ok.

      This comment is not to pass judgement on Fresh Direct, reckless drivers, people how ride bicycles, delivery people, etc. and I hope this forum won’t create a political but useless noise over it. Just hope this person makes it.

    2. Cody says:

      I’m sure the NYPD and local NIMBY types will quickly blame the bicyclist for being too soft and squishy while riding next to trucks.

      • robert says:

        I hope the rider is ok, but the NYPD lays blame where it falls.
        If the biker went through a red light could be at fault and the same with the truck driver. It is also possible that it was an accident. We all wait for the facts before reaching a conclusion.

        • Josh says:

          NYPD is very fast to lay blame on victims and there have been NUMEROUS cases where the reality is the blame initially laid by NYPD does not match the facts. The best thing for NYPD to do is to not lay blame on anyone to the press until a thorough investigation is conducted and concluded.

    3. Michael says:

      I hope the person is ok. That stretch of Broadway is very treacherous for cyclists, I ride that way a lot and have to be very careful. There are cars coming up on the left where Amsterdam and Broadway merge and Broadway widens significantly as the number of traffic lanes increase. Plus, if you are riding on the right hand side of Broadway and want to ride north on Amsterdam, you have to cut across multiple lanes of traffic in order to get to the bike lane on the left side of Amsterdam. Not to mention the cars making right turns onto 72nd street as you try to ride north in the right lane. Some additional Traffic Engineering would be welcome.

      • Christian says:

        Completely agree. The Lincoln Center intersection seemed intractable and now it’s a lot safer — I hope they’re able to do something similar here.

      • joe says:

        I ride that stretch every day. You need to ride VERY defensively between 70th and 73rd. It may mean riding slowly, stopping at the light at 72nd to cross to the west side of the northbound lanes , and then waiting at the light to cross 72nd street itself to the get to the Amsterdam Ave bike lane. And then being careful when you cross 73rd street where cars are waiting to make the left.

    4. Rick says:

      After a good friend riding a bike to work was hit and now is permanently brain damaged (close to being a vegetable), I am pretty anti-bike riding in the city. It’s dangerous. Especially at night. It is VERY tough to see cyclists if you’re driving at night.

      I hope this bike rider pulls through with no lasting terrible injuries.

    5. Bart says:

      This is not a city built for cyclists. Period. The city’s avenues were only built so wide, and the bicycle lanes have only caused major traffic and visibility issues. Cars, buses, trucks, taxis, are part of city life, and a bicyclist takes their life in their hands if they choose to compete with them. Bicycles should be for recreation only. I know this won’t be popular, but it’s the truth.

      • DenMark says:

        NYC wasn’t built for cars either.

        I rode to and from work in Midtown from the UWS daily for 5ish years. It was very effective way to commute and there is little reason more people can’t do it.

        Standard caveat that I do not know who is to blame here and I am not suggesting it was the truck at this time, but driver’s do have a higher duty of care given the several thousand pounds of steel they control. Given the constant stream of pedestrian / bicyclist injuries / fatalities, I would think the discussion would be about encouraging safe driving (enforcing speed limits, ticketing reckless drivers, etc.).

        You right, your statement is not popular, but also callous and narrow-minded.

      • Wendy says:

        I don’t think the city of Amsterdam was built to accommodate cyclists, and yet thousands of people ride bikes there daily. Same with Copenhagen. Where there’s a will, there’s a way. The N/S avenues in New York City are plenty wide / enough to accommodate a cycling Lane. And while we’re talking about dangerous intersections, the renovation of Columbus Circle has made that one of the most dangerous intersections In Manhattan for bicyclists.

    6. Doug Garr says:

      Let’s look at this objectively, if possible, and keep the conversation on an intelligent level. We don’t know what happened. Here’s what I do know in general. Ever since we’ve had “legal” fatalities in the UWS the DeBlasio Administration has had this campaign for drivers to be aware when turning, etc. and that “your choices matter.” I’ve seen the trucks. But the campaign has to be extended to everyone — cyclists and pedestrians. On WEA there are numerous instances of cyclists brazenly speeding on sidewalks, sometimes drinking coffee at the same time. Pedestrians legally walking in crosswalks maybe should think about not checking their cell phones while doing so. The safety thing has to make everyone aware. And if you’re a jaywalker like I am (and most NYers) then look both ways. Be safe out there everyone!

    7. Hb says:

      Thank you for reporting this accident. I also witnessed this occur and was hoping for an update on the man’s condition. Two corrections, though: 1. It was a US Fresh truck (a food supplier for restaurants), and not a Fresh Direct truck. 2. The gentleman was not pinned under the wheels of the truck when the ambulance arrived. He was lying in front of the rear set of wheels.

    8. Charliebsn says:

      I’m a bike rider on the UWS. That intersection is crazy dangerous for everyone. Amsterdam is only a block over and has a designated bike lane. People take their lives in their own hands when riding on Broadway. I just don’t get it.. I hope this person recovers quickly.

    9. tony bien says:

      Sounds like Amsterdam Ave., not quite B’way.- obviously a very dangerous convergence of thoroughfares that should be negotiated with greater care and delicacy. I hope he survives to ride again, so many people don’t. It’s a great biking town, be careful!

    10. Margaret says:

      Unconnected to this tragedy (it sounds like CIS is investigating?), hours after this happened, I watched a box truck plow through a rock-solid red light at 82nd and Columbus, at full speed, just steps from the 20th precinct. No enforcement. What else is new. Had the pedestrians who were waiting to cross the street stepped into the crosswalk on their walk signal, the truck driver would have killed them. Had motorists gone on their green, same thing.

      We need better law enforcement – and frankly, we shouldn’t have to ask for it the day after someone is critically injured – because drivers of massive trucks seem to see no consequences for flagrantly breaking the law on the Upper West Side, putting lives at risk. This is scary. People are paying with blood.

      I hope it’s obvious that protective enforcement isn’t unreasonable to expect. It’s badly needed.

      • AMH says:

        I agree completely–these big wide intersections are the worst. They would be good candidates for speed/red light cameras. The NYPD will probably be out here ticketing cyclists for riding without a bike lane (not that there’s any choice) while speeding car and truck drivers get off scot-free.

    11. Kim says:

      The stretch of Broadway is so hard for bicyclist. The safest place to bike is the East side of the street in front of Vitamin Shop since everything crosses on the other side. Then the bike lane starts on 73rd on the West side of the street. It’s super congested and a hard area to navigate. Better engineering is a MUST.

    12. Mark says:

      I was hit on 77th and Amsterdam back in ’09, and nearly decapitated by the bus as the wheels ran over my backpack, dragging me down. 10th Ave has this wave of green lights that allow you to go north very quickly, and it’s the only northbound avenue on the west side that allows commercial traffic north of 59th street, so all the major truckers and bus drivers take it. I got out with a few sucko injuries, but I was lucky. This poor guy… I hope he pulls through.

    13. UWSMommaTiger says:

      This is quite the picture. Any chance you guys can try to pay $5 for a new stick image? You, know, you spruce your reporting up a it? In any case, I hope the cyclist is okay.