The mayor's 2012 fiscal year report on city agencies was released yesterday, and in a press release, Mayor Bloomberg touts, “New York City services and operations have consistently improved over the last 10 years…because of our commitment to finding innovative ways to deliver better services at a lower cost." In this case it must also mean the NYPD's cost-cutting measures when it comes to policing illegal driving. According to an analysis of city data by Transportation Alternatives, compared with the previous 12-month period, the NYPD has written 28% fewer tickets for speeding, while fatal car crashes increased by 23%.
In that same 12-month period, 176 cyclists and pedestrians died in auto-related incidents, along with 115 drivers and passengers, while the NYPD wrote 50% fewer tickets for failure to yield as they did defective headlights. “These numbers are a stark reminder of what happens when the NYPD’s priorities are misguided,” Paul Steely White, the executive director of TA says in a release. “While the number of New Yorkers killed by drivers who speed and violate the pedestrians’ right of way has increased, the police continue to focus their attention on things like tinted windows and defective headlights."
At a press conference for a campaign promoting pedestrian safety yesterday, Transportation Department Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan told us that her department is working with the NYPD to ensure that the NYPD enforces traffic laws, but refused to get into specifics. "It's too early to give an announcement now," she said. We're anxiously awaiting that press conference, and as wasn't the case yesterday, hope the mayor shows up.