In 2001 a total of 392 pedestrians, cyclists, motorists, and passengers were killed in New York City in traffic accidents, or more than one per day. In the past decade that figure has fallen every year except in 2010, when it rose slightly from 256 in 2009 to 269. But, barring an exceptionally bad holiday accident season, 2011 is on track to be another record year for traffic fatalities.
With a month left until the new year, Transportation Nation notes that the number of deaths from traffic accidents in New York City this year sits at 214—last year at this time the figure was 256. But 214 is still much too high—in fact it exceeds the number of New Yorkers killed by guns during the same period.
"Like the other crime and public safety issues that the NYPD solves, traffic deaths and injuries are preventable. New Yorkers deserve more leadership than Ray Kelly’s acceptance of the status quo,” says Transportation Alternatives' Noah Budnick.
But NYPD spokesman Paul Browne says that the department has been proactive, reducing the number of traffic accidents in the city by over half in the last decade, and issuing "over 770,000 summonses for moving violations so far this year."
That probably helps, but let's be honest: it's all thanks to the haikus.