One positive of the global pandemic has been fewer traffic fatalities. With people staying inside and lowering traffic density on the streets, the number of people who were killed in traffic accidents during the peak months of the COVID-19 shut down was dramatically lower.
That good news did not last, however. With New York City quickly reopening, traffic deaths have reached their highest levels since 2016 — a sobering and unexpected development.
A Deadly Month
In the month of June, it has been reported that 29 New Yorkers were killed in auto accidents, a record number that has only been reached once before, in 2016. That number is roughly one-third higher than June of 2019, and more than three times higher than the number of fatalities in May of this year.
Police have reported that many motorists are driving faster and more recklessly following the pandemic. Because streets have still not been as busy as usual, some motorists are choosing to speed or drive carelessly. In addition to the deaths, the NYPD reported more than 3,500 injuries associated with traffic accidents in June, 2020.
Bicycle accidents and fatalities also increased sharply in June. This is likely a result of the surging popularity of cycling post-pandemic, as thousands of new riders take to the roads and trails in an effort to enjoy socially distant recreation — or avoid mass transit commuting.
A Need for Safer Streets
A few years ago, New York City officials launched their Vision Zero campaign to reduce the number of traffic fatalities on local streets.
Results so far have been mixed. While road and safety upgrades have resulted in some improvement, the city remains far from its stated goal of zero deaths.
The COVID-19 crisis, which has damaged city finances by lowering tax payments, is likely to jeopardize elements of the city’s safe streets initiative.
The result has been a dangerous mix for city drivers, cyclists and pedestrians, who must cope with reckless drivers and an influx of new transportation options, including mopeds.
Given these developments, it’s prudent to stay extra cautious on the road as the city recovers from the pandemic.
Finding the Right Auto Accident Attorney
At the Frankel Law Firm, we’ve been fighting for the rights of injured persons for more than 40 years. If you need help, don’t hesitate to reach out to us today at (212) 888-5100 or at https://frankellawfirm.com. All plaintiff accident and injury cases which are accepted for representation are on a contingency basis which means that there will be no attorneys fee unless successful. Given the coronavirus pandemic, we can arrange for a free consultation by Facetime, Zoom, Skype or WhatsApp. Please feel free to give us a call.
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