Drivers Seriously Injure Two More Pedestrians — But One Hit-and-Run Driver Collared, Say Cops

File photo: Dave Colon
File photo: Dave Colon

Two more pedestrians have been struck and seriously wounded in bloody year that is experiencing a double-digit percentage increase in pedestrian injuries — but cops say one driver has been charged because he left the scene.

First, police announced on Wednesday that a pedestrian was seriously injured at the intersection of First Avenue and 77th Street on Tuesday night at around 6 p.m. According to cops, the unidentified walker was crossing E. 77th Street when he was struck by the 34-year-old driver of a large Toyota Tacoma, causing severe body trauma.

Police would not say the speed of the driver, who remained on the scene and was not charged. Meanwhile, the victim was taken to Cornell Hospital, where he remains in critical condition, according to police.

The local website Upper East Site provided coverage, including a photo of the seriously large Tacoma and its license plate, which revealed that the driver of this car is a seriously reckless person, having racked up 14 camera-issued speeding tickets since March 2020. All of those tickets, plus many more parking infractions, have been paid, meaning this reckless driver was safe to continue driving.

Also on Wednesday, cops said they had arrested the driver who struck and seriously injured a pedestrian in March at a deadly corner in Southeast Queens.

According to police, Sean Brown, 24, was driving an unidentified vehicle at around 10:15 p.m on March 28 when he hit a 31-year-old pedestrian at Liberty Avenue and 160th Street. Brown fled, according to police, while his victim was taken to Jamaica Hospital Medical Center, where he remains in critical condition with severe head trauma.

Brown was charged only with leaving the scene of a crash.

The injuries add to what is emerging as one of the most violent years on our roadways since the beginning of the Vision Zero initiative in 2014. Fatalities have slowed down from their earlier worst-ever pace, as DOT reported this week…

Chart: DOT
Chart: DOT

…but injuries and crashes are alarmingly high.

According to the NYPD, there have been 31,918 reported crashes so far this year, or roughly 263 crashes to which police respond every single day.

Those crashes have injured 14,488 people, or roughly 120 New Yorkers every single day. Of those, 4,157 were pedestrians, cyclists or moped or scooter riders. That means roughly 34 of the most vulnerable road users are injured every single day in this city.

The number of pedestrian injuries so far this year — 2,706 — is up 37 percent over the same Jan. 1-May 1 period last year. Pedestrian injuries are up the most in the precincts of Brooklyn North (up 41.5 percent), Manhattan below Central Park (up 35.3 percent), all of Queens (up 55.4 percent) and Staten Island (up 82 percent).