Tracking Progress: October 2014

Tracker-2014-10Here’s our  summary of precinct-by-precinct Vision Zero progress in Queens through October.   This month, we added summaries for the other boroughs as well.

Boroughwide there have been about 2,764 ped/cyclist injuries and fatalities so far this year, about 5.1% less than the average from the previous two years. Citywide, pedestrian and cyclist injuries and fatalities are down 5.7% from the average of the two previous years. In five Queens precincts (104, 109, 110, 111, and 115) ped/cyclist injuries and fatalities are down by more than 10%. The greatest improvement has been the 21% drop in ped/cyclist injuries/fatalities in the 111th Precinct (Bayside).

In addition, there have been about 9,658 injuries and fatalities among motorists and passengers in Queens, about 6.6% lower than the average from the previous two years. This figure has fallen by 7.8% citywide.  Nine Queens precincts (100, 103, 104, 105, 107, 109, 110, 111, and 115) have seen reductions of 10% or more. The greatest improvement has been the 22% drop in vehicle occupant injuries/fatalities in the 110th Precinct (Corona/Elmhurst).

Traffic enforcement rates in Queens continue to be strong:

  • Tickets for red light running (failure to stop at signal) in Queens are running 33% higher than the average for the previous two years (citiwide tickets are running 39% higher). With a 103% increase over previous years, the 104th Precinct (Glendale/Ridgewood/Maspeth) has shown the greatest increase in enforcement effort of any precinct in Queens.
  • Tickets for speeding in Queens are up about 55% from the average over the previous two years (citywide, these tickets are up 48%). This excludes speed camera violations in school zones, which are new this year and growing rapidly as more cameras are deployed. The greatest increase in speeding enforcement has been in the 104th Precinct, which has increased by 323% over the average of the previous two years.
  • Tickets for Failure to Yield to Pedestrians, have grown 152% in Queens and 167% citywide. Enforcement has improved most notably in the 113th Precinct (Jamaica), where it has increased by 736% over the previous two years.
  • Enforcement against illegal cell phone use while driving remains very low — 26% lower than the previous two years in Queens, and 20% lower citywide. The 102nd and 103rd precincts are the only ones in Queens with higher enforcement levels in 2014 than in 2012-13.

Queens continues to lead the city as a whole in terms of increasing enforcement against speeding. It lags the city as a whole in terms of reducing traffic injuries, enforcing failure to stop at signals, failure to yield to pedestrians, and driving while using cell phones.

As before, we recommend against drawing strong connections about changes in injury rates. Vision Zero is about changing the culture. Enforcement, education, and engineering changes will take time to translate into safer behavior. Also, the precincts are starting at different baseline levels of enforcement and injury rates, and they’re doing a lot of hard work on driver education that doesn’t translate directly into tickets issued. We’re tracking progress, but believe we should allow more time before we start drawing conclusions.

Keeping in mind that the precincts are all starting from different baselines, here are the precincts that are leading the way, relative to their averages for 2012 and 2013:

Leading-2014-10

Tracking Progress: September 2014

Tracker-2014-09

Here’s our monthly summary of precinct-by-precinct Vision Zero progress in Queens. At the nine-month mark, we’re now three-quarters through our first year of Vision Zero. A lot has been accomplished. The city has held a series of town hall meetings and workshops in all parts of the city to gather input on street safety improvement needs; NYPD has stepped up enforcement; NYPD and DOT have increased public outreach and education campaigns; and legislators in Albany and City Hall have passed some important new laws to bring safety and accountability to our streets.

But much remains to be done. The city’s new 25 mph speed limit will enter into force soon, but was not yet in effect in the period covered by the data presented here.  Only a small number of the newly authorized speed cameras have been put in place. NYPD has not made it a priority to investigate crash-related injuries and fatalities, and District Attorneys offices have not yet started to hold reckless and negligent drivers accountable for their actions under the law. DOT has just started the process of rolling out proposed improvements in response to what it has learned through its public outreach in the spring. And important legislation on red light cameras, truck wheel guards, and legal reforms still await action in Albany.

We are optimistic that all of this will be accomplished in due course. But it is important to keep the current status of Vision Zero in mind when we ask why injuries and fatalities in Queens and citywide aren’t falling faster.

Boroughwide there have been about 2,443 ped/cyclist injuries and fatalities so far this year, about 5.5% less than the average from the previous two years. Citywide, pedestrian and cyclist injuries and fatalities are down 6.4% from the average of the two previous years. In six Queens precincts (102, 104, 107, 110, 111, and 115) ped/cyclist injuries and fatalities are down by more than 10%. The greatest improvement has been the 25% drop in ped/cyclist injuries/fatalities in the 111th Precinct (Bayside).

So far this year, there have been about 8,458 injuries and fatalities among motorists and passengers, about 7.7% lower than the average from the previous two years. This figure has fallen by 8.7% citywide. Eight Queens precincts (100, 103, 104, 105, 107, 109, 110, and 115) have seen reductions of 10% or more. The greatest improvement has been the 30% drop in vehicle occupant injuries/fatalities in the 100th Precinct (Rockaway Beach).

Traffic enforcement rates in Queens continue to be strong:

  • Tickets for red light running (failure to stop at signal) in Queens are running 29% higher than the average for the previous two years (citiwide tickets are running 39% higher). With a 109% increase over previous years, the 112th Precinct (Forest Hills) has shown the greatest increase in enforcement effort of any precinct in Queens.
  • Tickets for speeding in Queens are up about 59% from the average over the previous two years (citywide, these tickets are up 43%). This excludes speed camera violations in school zones, which are also new this year and growing rapidly as more cameras are deployed. The greatest increase in speeding enforcement has been in the 113th Precinct (Jamaica), which has increased by 308% over the average of the previous two years.
  • Tickets for Failure to Yield to Pedestrians, which before the past year was very lightly enforced, have grown 158% in Queens and 167% citywide. Enforcement has improved most notably in the 113th Precinct (Jamaica), where it has increased by 858% over the previous two years.
  • Enforcement against illegal cell phone use while driving remains very low — 27% lower than the previous two years in Queens, and 20% lower citywide. The 102nd and 103rd precincts are the only ones in Queens with higher enforcement levels in 2014 than in 2012-13.

Queens continues to lead the city as a whole in terms of increasing enforcement against speeding. It lags the city as a whole in terms of reducing traffic injuries, enforcing failure to stop at signals, failure to yield to pedestrians, and driving while using cell phones.

As before, we recommend against drawing strong connections about changes in injury rates. Vision Zero is about changing the culture. Enforcement, education, and engineering changes will take time to translate into safer behavior. Also, the precincts are starting at different baseline levels of enforcement and injury rates, and they’re doing a lot of hard work on driver education that doesn’t translate directly into tickets issued. We’re tracking progress, but believe we should allow more time before we start drawing conclusions.

Keeping in mind that the precincts are all starting from different baselines, here are the precincts that are leading the way, relative to their averages for 2012 and 2013:

Leading-2014-09

Diversity Plaza Workshop

Diversity Plaza was created in 2011 as part of the Jackson Heights Neighborhood Transportation Study to create a new public space in a busy neighborhood and commercial district that lacked one, improve pedestrian safety at the 74th Street/Broadway/Jackson Heights subway station, and improve traffic circulation in and through the neighborhood.   Now that the community has gotten to know the space and see how it can be used, it’s time to start thinking about how to design the space for the future.

There will be an important public workshop on Saturday, October 18th, 2014, from 2-4 pm at PS 69 to discuss the future of this new town square.   Please join us!

If you can’t attend, but care about the future of Diversity Plaza, please take a few minutes to complete Envisioning Diversity Plaza Survey.

DiversityPlaza

Tracking Progress: August 2014

Tracker-2014-08

Here’s our monthly summary of precinct-by-precinct Vision Zero progress in Queens.  Highlights:

  • Boroughwide there have been about 2,166 ped/cyclist injuries and fatalities so far this year, about 3.8% less than the average from the previous two years.  Citywide, pedestrian and cyclist injuries and fatalities are down 5.6% from the average of the two previous years.  In six Queens precincts (102, 104, 107, 110, 111, and 115) ped/cyclist injuries and fatalities are down by more than 10%.
  • So far this year, there have been about 7,498 injuries and fatalities among motorists and passengers, about 7.6% lower than the average from the previous two years.  This figure has fallen by 9% citywide.  Eight Queens precincts (100, 103, 104, 105, 107, 109, 110, and 115) have seen reductions of 10% or more.
  • Tickets issued for Speeding and Failure to Yield for Pedestrians continue to be issued at a significantly higher pace than in previous years in nearly every precinct in Queens.
  • In August, most Queens precincts significantly increased their enforcement of red-light running (“Failure to Stop at Signal”) relative to their enforcement rates earlier in the year.  Tickets issued for red-light running in Queens now stands at 30% higher than the 2012-13 average.
  • Enforcement against illegal cell phone use while driving remains very low.  The 103rd Precinct remains the only one with higher enforcement levels in 2014 than in 2012-13.
  • Queens continues to lead the city as a whole in terms of increasing enforcement against speeding.   It lags the city as a whole in terms of reducing traffic injuries, enforcing failure to stop at signals, failure to yield to pedestrians, and driving while using cell phones.

As before, we recommend against drawing strong connections about changes in injury rates. Vision Zero is about changing the culture.  Enforcement, education, and engineering changes will take time to translate into safer behavior.  Also, the precincts are starting at different baseline levels of enforcement and injury rates, and they’re doing a lot of hard work on driver education that doesn’t translate directly into tickets issued. We’re tracking progress, but believe we should allow more time before we start drawing conclusions.

Keeping in mind that the precincts are all starting from different baselines, here are the precincts that are leading the way, relative to their averages for 2012 and 2013:

Leading-2014-08

Come for the bonanza, stay for the rodeo!

SGSF

Make Queens Safer’s Bike Bonanza / Safer Greener Streets Fair keeps growing…

Here’s today’s program:

Update

Today was amazing!  We had hundreds of people from the community show up and easily a hundred volunteers help out.   We have posted a report from our Kid Engineers Traffic Study.

And look here for pictures and video of the event.

Statement on Hit & Run Legislation

Make Queens Safer would like to offer the following statement in support of Int No. 371, new legislation proposed in the City Council to impose new civil penalties on hit-and-run drivers:

It is our hope that Vision Zero could equate to zero fatalities due to hit and run drivers. Those who lack the moral compass, compassion, and civic responsibility to stay on the scene of a traffic incident should certainly pay a civil penalty.

We need legislation from Albany to keep dangerous drivers off our streets, and even from returning to our streets, as we’ve seen in detail in the last year. While we wait and advocate for that, we recognize that Council Member Van Bramer’s legislation, when enacted, will encourage drivers to stay on the scene of a crash and live up to their full responsibilities as licensed drivers in New York State.

A hit and run driver possibly denies an innocent victim access to urgent medical care, by fleeing the scene; no family should suffer such a fate.

We strongly encourage those who represent us in City Council to enact Int. No.371 without delay.

Vision Zero for Back-To-School

SchoolAs a new school year begins, it is a fitting time to reflect on whether we are doing all we can to provide children with safe routes to school, and how we can stem the ongoing epidemic of children injured or killed on city streets.

At many NYC schools, arrival and dismissal times seem chaotic during the first couple of weeks of the school year.  Sidewalks overflow as parents accompany their children in greater numbers, and stay longer to make sure kids get safely inside.  And the streets are busy, too, as the full workforce returns from vacation season back to daily commuting.  Even the pedestrians are in a hurry: many families are not yet settled into new morning routines, and are scrambling to be on time for school and work.  It’s a crowded mix of stress, excitement, and distraction, producing a very dangerous environment on neighborhood streets.  We need better plans to keep our “kidmuters” safe.

Everybody has a role to play in making this safer.

Parents, regardless of whether you and your children travel to and from school by foot, car, or bike, leaving the house just 10 minutes earlier than deadlines dictate can reduce stress, rushing, multi-tasking, and recklessness, thereby increasing awareness of the environment, good judgment, erring on the side of caution, and relaxed road and street interactions. That in turn can reduce crashes, injuries, and fatalities. Additionally, that 10 minute cushion can model for children that, despite appearances to the contrary in our busy culture, one need not rush and be harried. Courtesy and personal responsibility can pave your way to and from school and work. What better over-arching educational message could we transmit to our children as we send them off to their studies each morning and welcome them back each afternoon? Continue reading

Tracking Progress: July 2014

Tracker-2014-07
Here’s our monthly summary of Vision Zero progress in Queens.  Highlights:
  • Progress toward reducing pedestrian and cyclist injuries is difficult to measure in most precincts.  Six precincts (102, 104, 107, 110, 111, and 115) appear to have made real progress, but boroughwide ped/cyclist injuries have only fallen 3.2% relative to the average from the past two years.
  • Injuries among motorists and passengers has also been mixed precinct to precinct with the greatest improvement seen in six precincts (100, 104, 105, 107, 110, and 115).  Boroughwide, vehicle occupant injuries have fallen 7.5% relative to the previous two years.
  • Tickets issued for Speeding and Failure to Yield for Pedestrians continue to be issued at a significantly higher pace than in previous years in nearly every precinct in Queens.
  • However, many precincts in Queens have not significantly increased their enforcement against red light running (“Failure to Stop at Signal”).  In only eight precincts (102, 103, 104, 107, 110, 111, 112, and 114), are year-to-date enforcement levels in 2014 significantly above their 2013 levels.
  • And enforcement against illegal cell phone use while driving has fallen off the charts.  Only in the 103rd precinct re enforcement levels higher than they were in both 2012 and 2013.
  • Queens leads the city as a whole in terms of increasing enforcement against speeding.   It lags the city as a whole in terms of reducing traffic injuries, enforcing failure to stop at signals, failure to yield to pedestrians, and driving while using cell phones.
We continue to recommend against drawing strong connections about changes in injury rates. Vision Zero is about changing the culture.  Enforcement, education, and engineering changes will take time to translate into safer behavior.  Also, the precincts are starting at different baseline levels of enforcement and injury rates, and they’re doing a lot of hard work on driver education that doesn’t translate directly into tickets issued. We’re tracking progress, but believe we should allow more time before we start drawing conclusions.

Continue reading

Tracking Progress: June 2014

Tracker-2014-06

Our monthly summary of Vision Zero progress in Queens appears above.  Some noteworthy observations:

  • June saw a slight slowdown in the pace of pedestrian safety enforcement actions in Queens, relative to May’s more intensive focused enforcement efforts in many precincts.   Failure to Yield to Pedestrians saw a particularly sharp dropoff in enforcement.
  • Year-to-date, enforcement actions for red light running continue to be up slightly since last year, and enforcement actions for speeding and failure to yield to pedestrians continue to be up significantly.
  • Queens is leading the city as a whole in terms of reducing pedestrian/cyclist injuries and fatalities.   It is also leading the city as a whole in terms of increasing enforcement against speeding.   Queens is lagging the city in terms of reducing vehicle occupant injuries and fatalities, and in enforcing failure to stop at signals, failure to yield to pedestrians, and driving while using cell phones.

As before, we don’t recommend drawing strong connections at this stage about changes in injury rates. Vision Zero is about changing the culture, and enforcement, education, and engineering changes will take time to translate into safer behavior. Also, the precincts are doing a lot of hard work on driver education that doesn’t translate directly into tickets issued. We’re tracking progress, but believe we should allow more time before we start drawing conclusions.

More details are available on our Statistics page.

Keeping in mind that the precincts are all starting from different baselines, here are the precincts that are leading the way, relative to their averages for 2012 and 2013:

Leading-2014-06