Pedestrians in New York can feel a little safer now that countdown timer installations will be starting at dangerous intersections, reports the Gothamist.
Although New York personal injury lawyers do concur that using caution, being alert and paying attention at busy, dangerous intersections lowers your risk of having a New York pedestrian accident more than anything.
We had previously posted on our New York Injury Lawyer Blog that the New York Department of Transportation (NYDOT) had launched an investigation into pedestrian accidents at intersections. They concluded that countdown timers would greatly improve pedestrian safety. The project is underway and by summertime, 43 timers will be installed with the eventual goal of having 1,500 timers in place citywide.
“Crossing the street doesn’t need to be a guessing game,” DOT Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan said in a statement yesterday. “New York City’s streets have never been safer, but we need to do even more and countdown signals can help pedestrians avoid getting caught short.”
Though some New Yorkers miss the old “Walk” and “Don’t Walk” signs, adding countdown timers to the current White Man/Red Hand pictures will be a welcome improvement.
Countdown signal locations can be viewed here.
In 2009 the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported that 4,092 pedestrians were killed and 59,000 sustained injuries nationwide. Their deaths accounted for 12 percent of all traffic fatalities. In New York there were 1,156 traffic-related deaths, of those, 306 were pedestrians. New York ranked third, behind DC (48 percent) and New Jersey (26.9 percent), as having the most traffic-related deaths as pedestrians recorded at 26.5 percent.
Over half of all fatal traffic accidents in New York City involved pedestrians last year.
The following are useful safety tips that New York City pedestrians are encouraged to follow:
-Pedestrians in crosswalks have the right-of-way, but should always be alert.
-Always use crosswalks, look left, right, and then left again before crossing the street.
-Pay attention; don’t be listening to music or talking/texting on a cell phone while trying to cross the street.
-During nighttime hours, always carry a flashlight and wear reflective clothing in order to be better seen by motorists.
-Use the sidewalk as it is meant to keep you safe. If no sidewalk is available, walk along the edge of the street facing traffic.
If you have been injured in a pedestrian accident in the New York City or Long Island areas, contact the Law Offices of Nicholas Rose to discuss your rights. Call 718-261-0549 for a free consultation.