In the latest installment in our ongoing series of "Cars Where They Don't Belong," a motorist in Queens drove up onto the dedicated bike path that connects cyclists to the Queensboro Bridge yesterday morning. There he collided with a cyclist, who no doubt wasn't expecting to encounter a car on the bike path, which is completely separated from motor vehicle traffic. According to Streetsblog, the cyclist, a 31-year-old male, suffered head trauma and was taken to Cornell Hospital in serious condition. Any guesses on what consequences face the driver?
If you guessed ZERO, you're probably correct! (How'd you know?) The NYPD press office tells us that because the driver stayed at the scene they don't have any information on this. And because the cyclist is in serious condition, and not dead, the NYPD's Accident Investigation Squad is not conducting an investigation, as they're required to do by law. This means it's likely there will be "no criminality suspected," as the NYPD likes to put it more times than we'd care to count.
The City Council is trying to create a task force to figure out a way to fix the AIS, and City Councilmember Stephen Levin has proposed legislation that would revise the NYPD Patrol Guide to bring the AIS in line with state law, which requires a thorough investigation in the event of "serious physical injury," including "serious protracted disfigurement, protracted impairment of health or protracted loss or impairment of the function of any bodily organ."
If the unidentified victim in yesterday's "accident" survives, he'll be luckier than Eric Ng. In 2006, a drunk driver mistakenly took a similar bike path on the Hudson River Greenway and killed the 22-year-old cyclist.