Upper East Side Community Board Calls to Expand Safe Bicycle Lanes in Central Park

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MANHATTAN, NY – The Upper East Side’s Community Board 8 voted in a landslide Wednesday evening to demand that additional safe bicycle lanes be implemented in Central Park, Streetsblog reports. This vote adds another voice to the growing chorus calling for action on bike safety, an issue that has plagued the city in recent years. The death of local pediatrician Daniel Cammerman in a bicycling accident last December was a catalyst for the board’s 41-1 vote.

The site of the accident which killed beloved local pediatrician Dr. Cammerman.

“The unfortunate death of Dr. Cammerman was not an accident,” local resident Andrew Rosenthal said during CB8’s virtual meeting. “It was inevitable. Let’s not have more people die in Central Park needlessly.”

“This would be a great time to do it,” he continued, referencing the ongoing COVID-19 crisis and the city’s response. “I’m seeing pictures of hospital workers collecting bikes in Queens because this is their preferred method of transit right now and they don’t have protected bike lanes near hospitals. We have some but we need more.”

The vote calls for the Department of Transportation to work with the Central Park Conservancy and Parks Department to immediately draw up protected east-west routes for both cyclists and pedestrians.

Bicycle Accidents Involving Cars

Fatalities from bicycle accidents have been a hot-button issue in New York for the past several years. While the rate of serious injuries and fatalities from biking have dropped significantly over the first decades of the 21st Century due to increased safety measures, the total number of fatalities has increased, as more New Yorkers are biking to avoid traffic jams and delayed MTA trains. Last year, 205 New Yorkers were killed in bicycle accidents, the most that have died in any year this century, and an increase from the 192 reported in 2018.

The danger motor vehicles pose to bicyclists is obvious given their discrepancies in size, speed, and safety features. For that reason, New York State laws require motorists to exercise particular caution around bicyclists — something called an obligatory duty of care. This duty of care is increased when the bicyclist is a child.

As with other accidents, it is common in bicycle accidents involving motor vehicles for both the driver and the bicyclist to share fault — that is, to both bear a portion of the responsibility for causing the incident. However, because of the obligatory duty of care that motorists owe bicyclists, there is a good chance in any given accident that the motorist bears more responsibility than the bicyclist.

If you or someone you love has been injured or worse by a careless driver, the New York bicycle injury attorneys of Finz & Finz, P.C., can help you fight for justice and the financial compensation you deserve. Contact us today for a free, no-obligation consultation.