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New York, NY - 16% Record Rise in Bike Accidents in 2010

Published on: December 21, 2010 08:04 AM
By:  NY Post
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New York, NY - There’s been an alarming 16 percent spike in vehicle and bicycle collisions over the past year that investigators blame in large part on rogue cyclists who have turned city streets into demolition derbies.

There have been 3,830 accidents involving bicycles, including 12 fatal ones, so far this year, compared to 3,294 in 2009, city statistics show. The East Village and Downtown Brooklyn have the most accident-prone intersections.

“This was a catastrophe in the making as soon as they put those bike lanes up around the city,” said a cop in the East Village, the epicenter of collisions even with several bike-only lanes.

“They are arrogant. They think they now own the road and think they can do no wrong,” the officer said. “Some even yell at police cars saying they have the right of way.”

Other danger spots include both sides of the Brooklyn and Manhattan bridges.

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“It’s crazy. The volume of traffic, careless bicyclists and too many turns in too many directions is a recipe for disaster,” said a traffic-accident investigator. “Most times they don’t obey [laws] and that leads to chaos.”

Commercial drivers say they live in fear of hitting bikers.

“Man, it’s a pain because they truly think they can just do whatever they want to do,” said Manny Sosa, a UPS driver for 15 years.

Some 17,500 people commute daily by bike—up from 8,500 in 2006, according to the Department of Transportation.

“We have too many bicyclists that are bad actors, so to speak. Too many bicyclists don’t obey the rules,” said Councilman Jimmy Vacca (D-Bronx), chairman of the Transportation Committee. “If they don’t, they deserve a ticket just like any driver.”

Cops handed cyclists 29,545 tickets in 2010, compared to 27,555 last year.

Bikers, however, blamed drivers for the rise in accidents.

“I get hit in some fashion probably every couple of weeks,” said Chris Gewecke, a bike messenger. “I’ll get ‘doored’ or something by someone getting out of a cab or a truck. They just don’t see you sometimes, or they don’t care.”



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Read Comments (24)  —  Post Yours »

1

 Dec 21, 2010 at 08:11 AM Butterfly Says:

What do you expect? Bike riders do not wear helmets, do not follow the rules of the road, do whatever they want!! U Turns, go wrong way in wrong lane, go through lights, and are not ticketed, and are unlicensed!!!

2

 Dec 21, 2010 at 08:46 AM booky Says:

I think that everyone who wants to ride a bike on the street should make some sort of a permit and, learn the basic safety rules. how would they know the rules without learning it? how should they know that a u turn is illegal? how should they know that your not going wrong way? how should they know that there's such a thing as a red light for bikes and a green light for cars? why should they buy red blinking lights and reflectors no one told him that... why shouldn't they think that they have always the right of the way no matter the situation, if they never learned that its not like this?

3

 Dec 21, 2010 at 08:49 AM JerusalamiKugel Says:

Did The Wiiliamsburg Council come up with this? LOL

4

 Dec 21, 2010 at 08:53 AM yaakov doe Says:

If they would just obey traffic law and stop for stop signs and lights and not go the wrong way on one way streets they'd be safer. From what I've seen in Brooklyn alone an entire police precinct could spend the whole day jusat writing tickets to these law breaking bikers.

5

 Dec 21, 2010 at 08:54 AM ModernLakewoodGuy Says:

All bicycle drivers in the five boroughs should be required to be licensed. All commercial bicycle drivers, such as messengers, couriers, etc should be required to be insured.

6

 Dec 21, 2010 at 09:55 AM volfie Says:

mmmm.just what we dont need -more government involvement.soon we will have an ofice of bicycle management-secretataies,fax machines,computers,bloated staff,lawyers,ticket-writers,bike-courts,sick-days,holidays,pensions,ticket quotas,bke inspection fees,etc.etc. and etc.
Maybe after several injuries bikers will get off or get the message.
Response to 2,5.

7

 Dec 21, 2010 at 10:04 AM shloimazel Says:

Add two accidents to thise stats. I was plowed by a car while waiting for a light to turn green (I wasn't moving the car moved into my bike). I got car doored while riding legally in a bike lane.

8

 Dec 21, 2010 at 10:44 AM Anonymous Says:

The insurance industry must love this. There is now a steep increase in liability for the driver of an auto, and this permits rate hikes. The mayor and his co-conspirators are dedicated to making the life of the motorist as difficult as possible. Remove as many parking spaces as possible, create traffic problems, have the city's army of ticket agents writing as many as possible to raise revenue, put bikes in the street, cut off as many traffic lanes as possible for bikers, etc. Bloomie, we're sick and tired of your declaring us motorists your enemy #1. Maybe come down hard on bikers - enforce strict laws for how they use the streets that are made for cars.

9

 Dec 21, 2010 at 10:51 AM shvigger Says:

Bikes slither up at you in the dark. Are they not required to have lights?

10

 Dec 21, 2010 at 10:52 AM shimonyehuda Says:

i agree with 2 and 5 we need to tax every bicycle the way we tax cars make them pay for inconveniencing all nyc drivers besides we need the new tax revenues every bike ridden by an adult should have a license

11

 Dec 21, 2010 at 11:05 AM Anonymous Says:

These aren't bikers. They are bicyclists. Bikers ride Harleys, and obey traffic laws.

12

 Dec 21, 2010 at 11:15 AM mewhoze Says:

bikes should not be permitted on public streets without liability insurance

14

 Dec 21, 2010 at 11:42 AM sammi Says:

The bikers are not all at fault here. What the article lacks to mention is the statistics within the 3,830 accidents.

17% of accidents where caused by cars coming out of parking spots or by swinging open the car doors.

11% by pedestrians crossing in the middle of the blocks (coming out from between cars)

So here we have already 28% accidents that are completely not even in the hand of the bikers.

What we really need is more education on how to share the roads with bikers. They are new and we are not used to them.

15

 Dec 21, 2010 at 12:05 PM scmaness Says:

yup,the bikers need to know there are rules for the road,plus helmuts and lights for bikes,it's both really,who know what the driver is on ,med,drugs,drinking and sleep-deprived,no kidding

16

 Dec 21, 2010 at 12:58 PM cowfy Says:

when i was a kid riding a bike was much safer.without helmets without laws on bikes.one reason was the average pickup on the average auto was 14-20 secounds to reach sixty miles an hour.that was turtle slow.today most cars do that in less then ten secounds and some 7 -9 secounds and some even 4-6 secounds now thats to fast to get out of the way or brake correctly and we all know how cars rocket down our streets.peoples reaction time hasn't changed.

17

 Dec 21, 2010 at 01:18 PM Askupeh Says:

Told you so, but no one would hear. In addition to everything that has already been mentioned, there is another ingredient here that spells disaster, and that is that the bicyclists, due to their arrogance and aggressiveness, have used up all the good will that was still left, and now cars won't yield for them. Anyone who knows anything about driving knows that without yielding one for another, no one will get any where. They would be like the North-going Zax and the South-going Zax, who met face to face in the Prairie of Prax, and no one would yield. There it ended in a stalemate; but on the real road a bike is no match to a car, in the hand of an experienced driver. Some drivers can put the fear of God in any bicyclist, if they should want.

I predict that the situation will get worse before it gets better. A big disaster, waiting to happen, will finally get those who think they know better what’s good for us, to finally wake up.

18

 Dec 21, 2010 at 01:47 PM ABitSlowInMath Says:

"Some 17,500 people commute daily by bike—up from 8,500 in 2006, according to the Department of Transportation."

That sounds to me like a 100 percent (plus) increase in ridership.

"There’s been an alarming 16 percent spike in vehicle and bicycle collisions over the past year". 16 %?

Let's see: 100%, 016%. 100%, 016%.

Now I'm confused. is that an increase or a decrease? I can't figure it out.

Now, I know it's not comparing identical time periods, but hey, It's not me who introduced the skewed statistics.

19

 Dec 21, 2010 at 04:06 PM mewhoze Says:

they should also have to use signals.
i was driving and saw 2 bicyclilsts using hand signals the other day. i wanted to shout out ''thank you'' to them

20

 Dec 21, 2010 at 06:04 PM Anonymous Says:

There are too many motor vehicles in Brooklyn and Manhattan, and too few parking spaces. Add bicycle riders to the mix, and a recipe for disaster or a "perfect storm" results. There are incompetent, and arrogant bicycle riders, and motor vehicle operators. Both sides do not have clean hands.

21

 Dec 21, 2010 at 06:50 PM chulent Says:

Thanks to our esteemed mayor mike bloomberg yurim hoidoi

22

 Dec 22, 2010 at 06:05 AM Crusty Says:

Reply to #1  
Butterfly Says:

What do you expect? Bike riders do not wear helmets, do not follow the rules of the road, do whatever they want!! U Turns, go wrong way in wrong lane, go through lights, and are not ticketed, and are unlicensed!!!

It's true that auto drivers don't wear helmets, but please don't tell me that they all follow the rules of the road and none ever go through lights. Lousy, inconsiderate drivers are all over and should all be condemned.

23

 Dec 22, 2010 at 02:51 PM Askupeh Says:

Reply to #22  
Crusty Says:

It's true that auto drivers don't wear helmets, but please don't tell me that they all follow the rules of the road and none ever go through lights. Lousy, inconsiderate drivers are all over and should all be condemned.

You're right; bicyclists when they are behind the wheel of a car don't follow the rules of the road and go through lights.

Those inconsiderate drivers you see and don't ride bikes; are the ones who support them here. Yes, among drivers there are bad ones too (there's one rotten apple in every barrel), but among bicyclists it is the other way around, there's one GOOD apple in every barrel. That's my experience. Among bicyclists, arrogance reigns supreme.

24

 Dec 23, 2010 at 03:01 AM Zigzag Says:

The DOT forced onto all NYorkers the bicycle lanes, thinking that it was the end of the story. Well, New Yorkers are revolting, by not stopping and giving anyone with a bicycle a chance and thus accidents will increase.
S Dept of Transportation Commissioner? Maybe next time he should have had hearings like everything else in America, instead of forcing the lanes down everyones throat, or street...

25

 Dec 26, 2010 at 08:36 PM michaltastik_dot_com Says:

I have a bicycle. A bicyclist is supposed to ride on the side of the street, *****NOT**** on the sidewalk. However, nasty drivers wanna try to run us off the road. I've gotten mad and ridden in the middle of the road because every time I ride on the side LIKE I"M SUPPOSED TO, nasty drivers honk, yell and try to run me off the road. BICYCLISTS WILL GET A TICKET FOR RIDING ON THE SIDEWALK. I feel like it's between risking my life or risking a ticket just because I want to spare myself $4.50 and get some excercise.

If you're in Queens don't run of over the frum girl riding her bike in a skirt!!!! Jewell is brutal with potholes, too and you might not feel them in a car but I have to weave around them because they are super jolting.

26

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