Surrounded by parents clutching pictures of their children whose lives were lost in traffic accidents, Mayor Bill de Blasio on Wednesday announced immediate action and the implementation of Vision Zero to increase traffic safety in New York City.
The mayor ran off startling statistics outlining the seriousness of traffic accidents in the city, including the facts that being struck by a vehicle is the leading cause of death for kids under 14 in this city and the second leading cause of death for seniors.
In the past decade almost 2,000 people have died and 30,000 were hospitalized as a result of these crashes, according to de Blasio.
“Last year we had 333 homicides in NYC, a record low, yet we had 286 traffic fatalities. That data is not even 100 percent complete as the year just ended,” he said. “It is shocking to see how those two numbers correspond and it is clear how much more focus we have to put on traffic safety.”
De Blasio announced that the city will be implementing Vision Zero, which is a plan with the goal to reduce deaths on NYC roadways to zero. The NYPD, NYCDOT, Health Department and Taxi and Limousine Commission will work in conjunction to implement the plan.
Leaders from these four groups will bring reports to de Blasio by Feb. 15. The reports will be a matter of public record.
“This is an idea that spread because it worked,” de Blasio said. “The core concept is that it treats every death as preventable. There are ways to change people’s habits and ways for government to act to protect people that we haven’t done enough of. I want the families here today to know that we are not going to let them down. They are right to hold us accountable and right to demand more.”