A study done in early 2018 did indeed indicate that pedestrian deaths are down, but pedestrian and bicycle advocates say more needs to be done to achieve the goal of zero traffic-related deaths. Vision Zero is a set of initiatives and a comprehensive plan started under Mayor Bill DeBlasio intended to eliminate all traffic-related deaths by 2024. Although many argue that the goal is at least lofty, many of the safety protocols put in place seem to have been working and pedestrian deaths have fallen forty-five (45%) since Vision Zero went into effect in 2013.
In 2016, as part of Vision Zero initiatives, a protected bicycle path was set up on the Pulaski Bridge. Additionally, street signs with reduced speed limits in areas where there are many cyclists have been erected and include a “bike lane” sign under the reduced speed limit sign. Another manner in which the City is drawing attention to the need to look-out for bicycle riders is the installation of what has been termed “Ghost Bikes” chained to street signs throughout Manhattan, to memorialize and bring attention to areas where bicyclists have been killed in crashes.
Keeping Pedestrians & Bicyclists Safe
Hopefully, the Vision Zero initiative continues to make a difference in keeping pedestrians and bicyclists in Manhattan and the greater New York City area safe on the roadways shared by all. Bicycle and pedestrian accidents can be reduced and avoided by additional enforcement by the New York City Police Department, greater public outreach and open lines of communication between citizens and government.