New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio recently announced that as part of the Vision Zero initiative, the New York City Department of Transportation (DOT), NYPD, and TLC would begin their third annual Dusk and Darkness campaign which features increased enforcement of traffic violations around sunset hours, ads raising awareness of changing conditions around daylight savings time, and more attention to drunk driving.
The Vision Zero Action Plan is intended to help end traffic deaths and injuries on New York City streets. As one of ten Vision Zero cities, New York has taken a number of steps to cut traffic fatalities, with a particular focus on pedestrians. The city installed 1,500 security bollards in high-profile sites to keep sidewalks safe, and de Blasio has worked to reduce car use in certain areas of the city.
The plan seeks to improve street safety by:
- increasing the enforcement of moving violations;
- improving street designs;
- holding public outreach sessions;
- increasing penalties for dangerous drivers;
- reducing speed limits; and,
- increasing the use of enforcement cameras.
“Under Vision Zero, we have gone to work where the crash data take us — and with Dusk and Darkness, we have focused on times of the year and times of the day that were simply more dangerous to pedestrians,” New York City Department of Transportation (NYCDOT) commissioner Polly Trottenberg said in a statement. “This year, we will fine-tune that effort, as we target newer drivers who may be taking dangerous chances on our roadways.”
Officials have also introduced “Alive at 25,” which offers a four-session driver safety program to targets drivers ages 18-25, the demographic of drivers behind the wheel in 20% of the city’s fatal crashes in 2017. The program emphasizes peer pressure and how to manage it. Participants examine the fact that they are in control of their behavior and are provided techniques for keeping control in driving situations.
“There is no greater concern than our students’ safety, including when they are behind the wheel of a car,” said schools chancellor Richard A. Carranza. “’Alive at 25’ is a critical effort to keep our students and community members safe, and I thank DOT and NYPD for supporting this effort.”