Give Today to Keep Streetsblog on the Traffic Justice Beat

Every December since 2009, I have put together an annual memoriam post for NYC pedestrians and cyclists whose lives were taken by motorists. As Streetsblog readers know, media coverage of traffic crashes is notoriously uneven — there are simply too many to keep up with — so it used to take a couple of days to put this post together.

Last year the task was made a little easier, or as easy as such a job can be. In 2012 we began maintaining a database of fatal crashes. Based on reports filed by Streetsblog and other outlets, we now keep a running record of pedestrian and cyclist deaths. Along with the victims’ identities, inasmuch as they are made public, we categorize each fatality by borough, City Council district, NYPD precinct, and the type of vehicle involved. We note when summonses are issued, and we use the database to follow the relatively few criminal cases that are brought against deadly drivers.

Given the volume of traffic deaths, the random nature of media reportage, and NYPD indifference, we can’t track every pedestrian and cyclist fatality. But we do record most of them. And Streetsblog is the one news source that takes the time to report traffic crashes as an epidemic, rather than one “freak accident” after another.

Streetsblog is the only place you’ll find journalists working the traffic justice beat day in and day out. But without you, we can’t make the case for life-saving traffic tech, push to strengthen the state’s weak traffic code, or hold politicians and law enforcers accountable for the plague of vehicular violence.

Please help Streetsblog continue this vital work by contributing to our spring pledge drive. Our goal is to raise $40,000 by June 1. Remember that everyone who makes a tax-deductible gift of $50 or more (or a monthly gift of $5 or more) will be eligible to win a folding bike, courtesy of Dahon.

Thank you.

— Brad