NYC Parents Call on Lawmakers to Protect Pedestrians After String of Deaths

Parents and community leaders are calling for safer streets as the number of pedestrian deaths in New York City continues to rise

NBC New York

What to Know

  • At least five pedestrians have been killed on New York City streets in 2020
  • Parents and community leaders are calling on lawmakers to pass protections for pedestrians
  • Safety advocates say 362 people have been killed in New York since legislation was introduced

Parents in New York City are calling for safer streets.

Public Advocate Jumaane Williams stood with parents on Saturday to call on lawmakers to pass the Reckless Drive Accountability Act. The bill would strip driving privileges from people who have multiple violations.

New York City has seen five pedestrian deaths in the first weeks of 2020. Among the victims, a 10-year-old child hit by a city sanitation truck.

"We really need to do something. We need to admit that this is a crisis. WE can't let any other child die in the streets," said Families for Safe Streets member Fabiola Mendieta, who lost her child in 2006.

The Reckless Driver Accountability Act has been in the works since 2018.

Safety advocates say 362 people have been killed in New York since it was introduced.

The first eight days of 2020 have already seen four pedestrian deaths across NYC, leaving some to wonder why it has been such a deadly time when Vision Zero is supposed to be making streets safer. NBC New York’s Erica Byfield reports.

"The fatalities that we've seen in the last week are emblematic of a city that's built for moving traffic instead of protecting people," Danny Harris with Transportation Alternatives said after three pedestrians were killed Tuesday.

While the first week of 2020 has proven deadly for pedestrians, statistics for the same week in past years shows just as many walkers died in the same week in 2017, 2015 and 2014.

A fifth pedestrian, 68-year-old Yulan Lu, was killed Friday evening near Queens Midtown Expressway, the NYPD said. The driver remained at the scene and was taken into police custody.

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