After 78 year old Michael Schenkman was killed on Northern Boulevard, advocacy group Transportations Alternatives is holding a massive ride to bring attention to street safety. Michael’s death in August was the 16th cyclist fatality in 2016, surpassing the 15 deaths in the full year 2015. The goal of this ride is to call on Mayor de Blasio to create better street infrastructure and to take action after a driver kills a cyclist or pedestrian.
Transportation Alternatives is calling for:
- Immediate action on Vision Zero Priority Corridors (of the 16 bike fatalities so far in 2016, half have taken place on corridors that received a “Priority” designation)
- Moving more quickly to redesign all of the city’s most dangerous streets with lifesaving improvements like protected bike lanes, pedestrian safety islands and greater visibility at crosswalks.
- The incoming Police Commissioner to formulate a clear Vision Zero policy that prioritizes speeding and failure to yield.
- The NYPD must change its policies on bike safety: stop victim-blaming after cyclist fatalities and focus on deterring the reckless behaviors that endanger people on bikes.
- To devote more resources to improve its dismal record on hit-and-run investigations. Only 2.5% of the city’s 38,000 hit-and-runs ended with any enforcement action last year.
The ride is tonight, gathering at 6 pm at the Fountain of Pamona at E. 59th St & 5th Ave, Manhattan. It will leave at 6:30 pm going to Washington Square Park. This is a bike ride, but whether you ride a bike or not, all New Yorkers who care about Vision Zero are welcome to join at the start and finish.
– Wear yellow. Bring a bell and lights for your bike (legally required while cycling in New York after dark).
– This is a peaceful and non-violent protest ride.
– We will obey all traffic laws at all times and stop at all red signal lights, unless directed otherwise by an NYPD officer.