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To Reduce Pedestrian Accidents, Clamp Down on Speeders

When most people think about violence on New York City streets, they focus on muggings, robberies and other violent attacks. However, New Yorkers face other dangers when venturing onto the sidewalks - speeding cars. A guest editorial in the New York Daily News outlines the ways the city can reduce pedestrian accidents and fatalities caused by speeding drivers.

The official speed limit in NYC is 30 mph, unless otherwise posted. However, even city buses often go faster than that! Nevertheless, New York is doing much better in terms of traffic fatalities than other big U.S. cities such as Chicago and Washington. However, that is little comfort to the 32 people, on average, who are hit by moving vehicles every day.

It is even less comfort to the survivors of those killed in pedestrian accidents - on average one every 2 ½ days.

According to the NYPD, 30 percent of fatalities are the result of speeding, and New York has responded by improving street design, developing education campaigns and identifying especially dangerous intersections. However, it still tickets more cell phone users than speeders, which some interpret as giving speeders a free pass.

According to data from the NYPD, speeding is much more dangerous than cell phone use - people are 28 times more likely to be injured or killed by a speeder than by a distracted driver. The editorial writers ask that NYPD put its limited resources to stopping speeders rather than ticketing cell phone users and people who fail to buckle their seat belts. They also suggest that the city install speed-cams on the streets of New York.

Whether or not you agree with the Daily News guest editorial, it is a fact that speeding on NYC city streets causes unnecessary hazards to pedestrians.

Source: New York Daily News, "Be Our Guest: Speeding on city streets is a real threat to pedestrian safety," Jun. 23, 2013.