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Ocean Parkway is Brooklyn’s deadliest roadway

The Brooklyn Paper
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It’s more like Ocean Speedway.

The borough’s most dangerous roadway for pedestrians is Ocean Parkway, according to a new study by the Tri-State Transportation Campaign.

Motorists killed six people on the boulevard that runs between Prospect Park and Coney Island between 2009 and 2011, the leading death toll for the borough which suffered the most pedestrians fatalities — 132 — over that time period.

Three of the six fatalities were in the Kensington portion of Ocean Parkway, between Church and Ditmas avenues, where two adults and one person over 60 years old lost their lives.

Neighbors of the roadway said they weren’t surprised by the grim numbers.

“It’s crazy over there because people drive like lunatics,” said Ellen Stein, a longtime resident of the block near Avenue H, who believes the area could use more red light cameras. “There is absolutely zero police presence on Ocean Parkway.”

Surveyors say the six-lane roadway fits into a trend about pedestrian fatalities: a disproportionate number occur on arterial roadways — old, multi-lane roads designed to funnel maximal amounts of traffic through the city quickly.

“From a research perspective, what we’re finding is vast majority of fatalities are coming on these roadways,” said Ryan Lynch, the associate director for the campaign, which examined roads throughout the tri-state area for its latest study. “[Arterial roads] make up 15 percent of the roadways and 60 percent of the fatalities.”

The borough’s second and third most dangerous roadways are Eastern Parkway and Kings Highway, with five and four pedestrian fatalities, respectively.

Ocean Parkway has actually become less dangerous since 2001, when five pedestrians were mowed down on the street in one year, according to city officials.

“We still need to do more to make neighborhoods in Brooklyn and across the city even safer,” said Department of Transportation spokesman Nicholas Mosquera, who noted that borough-wide traffic fatalities decreased by 23 percent from 2001 to 2011.

Reach reporter Eli Rosenberg at erosenberg@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260-2531. And follow him at twitter.com/emrosenberg.
Updated 10:08 pm, July 9, 2018
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Reasonable discourse

Chicken Underwear from Park Slope says:
I live in Park Slope and have family in Sheepshead Bay.

That said I never see the point of even driving on Ocean Pky.

If I have to drive, I would take the BQE to the Belt or Ocean Ave.

But Ocean Pky is the is only going to give me a headache. There many driver just weave in and out to race to the next red light. It really needs some traffic management.
March 4, 2013, 6:22 am
Or from DieHipster says:
Damned bike lanes.
March 4, 2013, 9:43 am
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Of course this has to do with the number of cyclists who think they own the roads with impunity and can do whatever they please. This is the consequence of that attitude and I'm not surprised at all. Until you bike zealouts come to terms with that you will see more streets like Ocean Parkway or Speedway become dangerous for drivers and other people.
March 4, 2013, 11:50 am
Alex from Park Slope says:
Tal, you are either incredibly ignorant or have a scathing sense of sarcasm. I really hope it's the latter because to say that these traffic deaths have anything whatsoever to do with cyclists is beyond idiotic. Regardless of one's feelings on cycling, no one can deny that dangerous driving is a scourge in this city. And while there are certainly a few reckless cyclists out there, cars killed over 200 people in NYC last year while cyclists killed NONE. Those numbers don't lie.
March 4, 2013, 12:11 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Why hurl personal insults at me? This just proves you are a Streetsblogger zealout with no logic if that's what you have to resort to. Is there not a bike lane on Ocean Parkway? Maybe it should be taken out like the Bedford Avenue bike lane which is now safer now that the bike lane is gone. Those numbers don't lie only bike zealouts do, which is why you must use personal insults to make your case. How many of those people killed by cars were cyclists or pedestrians flouting the law? Drivers are more innocent that you think.
March 4, 2013, 12:37 pm
Mike from Cobble Hill says:
I don't know whether that's the "real" Tal (I don't even know if there IS a real Tal!) but he and diehipster are absolutely uninformed, and still mouthing off! The bike lanes on Ocean Parkway are not on the parkway or the service road: they are on a dedicated section of the median sidewalk, separated from both cars and pedestrians.

If ignorance is bliss, these two must be laughing fools!
March 4, 2013, 12:44 pm
Eliot from Brooklyn Heights says:
"How many of those people killed by cars were cyclists or pedestrians flouting the law?"

Are you interested in finding an answer to this question? It's pretty simple to do so.

Here's one way. Someone published a study, and then the Brooklyn Paper wrote about it. The article is right up there, above the comments section. It even has a link to the study!

Ok, but that's just one study. Do other studies back it up? Let's search Google for "causes of nyc pedestrian fatalities"

Here's the first result:
http://www.nyc.gov/html/dot/html/about/pedsafetyreport.shtml
March 4, 2013, 1 pm
ty from pps says:
I don't remember who it was, but the other day someone suggested that Tal Barlizai get interviewed by the Brooklyn Paper. I think it would be awesome to get an "in depth" look at the man of Pleasantville that cares so much about Brooklyn.
March 4, 2013, 1:37 pm
Other Michael from Park Slope says:
Tal

Are you for real.? Did you even read the article?
March 4, 2013, 3:51 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
First of all, I had a very busy day today and I didn't even get a chance to be online until now. Seeing some of the comments coming shortly after the one impersonating me does give me a feeling that it's one of you guys. Getting to this, just like the other one that was mentioned, I would say it would be better just fixing the timing of the traffic signals especially when it can be done both quickly and cheaper compared to this so-called traffic calming, which is really traffic creating if you asked me. However, I still find jaywalking as a pedestrian placing themselves into harm's way the same way I do on cyclists flouting the traffic laws. I know what the Ocean Parkway is like because I have been there lots of times. Just like 4th Avenue, I wouldn't take away any travel lanes either, because it to is a major thoroughfare that commercial vehicles will be hurt by if reduced. Overall, I just see traffic calming as just another to way to promote congestion pricing by creating the very congestion itself, which is the Bloomberg way.
March 4, 2013, 5:54 pm
Jeff from Kensington says:
I wish we had more information on where exactly these accidents are happening.

Based on my experience, I bet a lot of people are getting hit on the service roads, either from drivers who are tearing down the service roads at unsafe speeds (and hitting pedestrians who are emerging from tightly packed parked cars and cutting over to the building sidewalk from the median pedestrian walkway) or at the intersections, where drivers on the service road are rolling through stop signs and darting across 4 lanes of traffic right at crossing pedestrians (who have the right of way, and are not expecting a speeding car to be driving at them). I've almost been hit twice by drivers doing this in the past 6 months, and a few months ago I was in a car service car that got hit from the side as it tried to make it across the 4-lane intersection by a car that was trying to make it through a yellow light to cross Ocean Parkway on Beverly.

It's really dangerous, and I hope the city seriously considers installing traffic lights on the service roads (perhaps allowing discretionary right hand turns), or puts speed bumps on the side roads to reduce speeding. There are a lot of elderly people in the neighborhood, and a lot of impatient, reckless drivers.
March 4, 2013, 5:55 pm
Alan from Crown Heights says:
The diagonal cut-through crossing the bike lane at Bay Parkway is terrifying. When cycling, you need to check behind you for cars treating it like an offramp, blazing through it at high speed without signaling or any respect for the crosswalk.

And then there are the drivers that position their cars to completely block the crosswalk on the bike lane, just about every single block.
March 4, 2013, 6:14 pm
common sense from bay ridge says:
@tal: There is no commercial traffic allowed on Ocean Parkway.

March 4, 2013, 6:31 pm
common sense from bay ridge says:
There have always been a lot of really bad wrecks on Ocean Parkway. It was even worse when there was a light in the middle of the Ave W intersection, where 3 cars of that era could not fit into the three lanes where OP veers left (coming from CI) at the same time.
March 4, 2013, 6:36 pm
Mark from Not Bklyn says:
No surprise that there are accidents at the intersection of Ocean Pkwy and Church. I grew up there and my parents still live there. Drivers coming up from the Prospect Expressway drive like maniacs. Plus up and down OP drivers speed to beat the lights. Not to mention people that cross when they don't have the green light.
March 4, 2013, 7:45 pm
Other Michael from Park Slope says:
Tal

commercial vehicles CAN NOT Ocean Parkway. Not ever. NO.

Also, it is a TWO WAY STREET. You can just make things "better just fixing the timing of the traffic signals". Driver just race from red light to red light. That is what the problem is now.

Go away and tell them how to paint the lines in the parking lots in Pleasantville, NY.

We are trying to make things better and save lives, this has noting to do with congestion pricing.
March 4, 2013, 9:52 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
The only reason why I know why many of you don't like the idea of timing the traffic signals better is that it will make traffic calming obsolete and unnecessary. You all know that it actually works better, which is why you have to fight it or you can't get what you want to happen. Again, traffic calming is not a long term solution, just a short term solution. Don't be surprised if later generations will be claiming that the traffic calming of this day is making traffic too slow and will remove to help move it more efficiently. Meanwhile, there should be a crackdown on jaywalking, because crossing without the walk signal is clearly throwing one's self into harm's way.
March 5, 2013, 4:26 pm
Other Michael from Park Slope says:
Tal

HOW DOES ONE TIME THE TRAFFIC SIGNALS ON A TWO WAY STREET?
March 5, 2013, 4:42 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
It is simple. There is no need to get angry. You simply retime the signals on both side of the street so that drivers can not speed or run red lights. What is so hard to understand about that? If you also put up signs reminding drivers of the speed limit they will obey, as many people have proven. Just because you want to punish drivers by making them obey the speed limit doesn't mean I am wrong.
March 5, 2013, 4:46 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Disregarding the person who used my name just now, who is probably one of you, being against traffic calming, doesn't make me against safe streets. The term is so loosely used, it can be interpreted as meaning almost anything based on how it's being viewed. Seriously, fixing the timing of signals is possible on a two way street is possible, you just don't want to do it. This isn't saying that you can't do it when you are really saying that you won't do it. Still, there should also be a crackdown on jaywalking especially when that to is illegal, but I don't hear anyone here trying to stop that despite saying how motorists must follow every letter of the law, but act silent or turn a blind eye on this. On a side note, Other Michael, was the shouting really necessary, because I feel that you need to take a chill pill?
March 5, 2013, 7:02 pm
Other Michael from Park Slope says:
Tal said "fixing the timing of signals is possible on a two way street is possible"

Really? How?

Has it been done anywhere where it does not encourage drivers rushing to beat the light that will turn red so they will make the next 4 or 5 that are going to be green?

Do you even own a car, Tal?
March 6, 2013, 5:41 am
Other Michael from Park Slope says:
and I am shouting because people are dying and you are talking about a crackdown on jay walking.

They are being killed, do you think the fear of a jay walking ticket is going to change anything?
March 6, 2013, 5:43 am
ty from pps says:
"despite saying how motorists must follow every letter of the law"

F*ck you Tal. How about just not driving 20 mph over the speed limit, pushing through pedestrians at crosswalks and running red lights at high speeds. How about that? Let's just start with that, Tal, you piece of ignorant dog sh*t on the bottom of society's shoe. How is that for being "below the belt" "where you're from," hmm?
March 6, 2013, 9:44 am
BunnynSunny from Clinton Hill says:
Ocean Parkway, as well as Eastern Parkway, were designed in the 19th century for horse and carriage. They included park space running down the middle. The original designers of these "park"ways had no idea that by 1950, there would be automobiles that could reach speeds of 90 miles per hour would be roaring up and down them 24 hours a day.
March 6, 2013, 10:14 am
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
For the record, I am not one of those people who drives the way reckless drivers do, and I have called them out in the past, plus I do own a car, which happens to be a 2012 Honda Civic that I not only bought with my own money with a personal check, but also pay the monthly loans on with my own money. If anyone associates me with them, I will call them for slander on their part, because it's not true at all. The truth is that there might not be any long term solutions to help with safe streets. Even as BunnynSunny mentioned is that when some streets were designed, they were designed for their time and not much of today's generation. I can say the same thing when highways were designed such as the Cross Bronx Expressway, which made for traffic during the 60's, but hardly today's traffic. Unfortunately, planners don't look too much into the late future to foreshadow what can happen long after their dead to see how to help with conditions. As for jaywalking, that is how most pedestrians get hit to begin with, because the motorist can easily prove that they had the green light while the pedestrian didn't even have the walk signal. Please explain why it's okay for the pedestrian can cross even without the walk signal, while the motorist must wait for the green light to go at all times. Once again, this is just like Animal Farms where only a certain group of animals were exempt from all laws while all others had to be subject to them at all times. Overall, until pedestrians and cyclists start following every letter of the law themselves by practicing what they preach, they have no right to tell motorists how to follow them when they don't.
March 6, 2013, 3:53 pm
Other Michael from Park Slope says:
Very nice Tal

now shut up and go away.
March 6, 2013, 4:19 pm
ty from pps says:
Oh, Tal. Finally, you have convinced me. Everything in your last comment was so well-reasoned and intelligent. You really made a great contribution to the conversation.

And I'm so proud of you too. You bought a car all by yourself?
March 6, 2013, 4:33 pm
Eliot from Brooklyn Heights says:
"As for jaywalking, that is how most pedestrians get hit to begin with."

No, it's not. As noted above, this has been studied and you are wrong on the facts.

http://www.nyc.gov/html/dot/html/about/pedsafetyreport.shtml
March 6, 2013, 5:23 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
The point of my comment is that most never really think about what is going to happen generations later. This is the unfortunate truth about planning. It's not just with roads, it's with building places to live and work as well. When the population started to be more rapid and increase almost exponentially, this lead to the idea of having apartment buildings of more than just a few floors so that they would take up less space to discourage sprawl, which is what lead to the skyscraper. Let's not forget that road expansions and highways were placed in response to the car culture, not to promote one as were traffic lights and signs as it got greater. As much as some may have hated Robert Moses and his building of highways, he was only trying to meet the demand of higher populations as with trying to make traffic move more efficiently. The reason why NYC still has so many highways and expressways in that matter is because there is still a demand for them compared to other cities. Tearing some of them down could lead to more traffic on local roads, which is why the truckers and even nearby residents are against this on the Sheridan Expressway. The LOMEX may not have had a lot of opposition had it been planned for Canal Street only where not only nothing would have to be torn down, when being planned on the proposed section for Broome Street, but it would have been a straight line from the Manhattan Bridge to the Holland Tunnel in providing direct access. Overall, I would rather have planning that will help future generations as well instead of just being disputed in a cycle between them on saying that traffic is going to slow to a later one just saying that it's too fast, which is what I am trying to make here.
March 6, 2013, 5:37 pm
ty from pps says:
Oh LORDY! Tal Barzilai is attempting to give us all a lesson in urban planning... Jesus, Give me strength! Ignoring the asinine content of his post, just the fact that he thinks his rambling comment is valuable is enough to make you laugh. Yes, Tal, I'm laughing at you.

And... this isn't English: "Overall, I would rather have planning that will help future generations as well instead of just being disputed in a cycle between them on saying that traffic is going to slow to a later one just saying that it's too fast, which is what I am trying to make here." It's not even typos or the usual odd word choice, this is just plain gibberish.
March 6, 2013, 6:32 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
I like to explain things in the form of what is known as tough love. One must know the concept of roads to understand how they work. You can call it gibberish all you want, but I have said similar things like this on the NY Times, and I was applauded greatly for saying this. BTW, there are much more intellectuals there than probably around here. The reason why I support cracking down on jaywalking is not just because it's actually against the law, but it is also having a pedestrian throwing themselves into harm's way. I don't see what is so great about it, but I guess to the anti-car crowd, that makes them a martyr.
March 6, 2013, 6:50 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
I like to explain things in the form of what is known as tough love. One must know the concept of roads to understand how they work. You can call it gibberish all you want, but I have said similar things like this on the NY Times, and I was applauded greatly for saying this. BTW, there are much more intellectuals there than probably around here. The reason why I support cracking down on jaywalking is not just because it's actually against the law, but it is also having a pedestrian throwing themselves into harm's way. I don't see what is so great about it, but I guess to the anti-car crowd, that makes them a martyr.
March 6, 2013, 6:50 pm
ty from pps says:
No, Tal. You explain things in the form of dumb.
March 6, 2013, 8:42 pm
Other Michael from Park Slope says:
and Tal

you are getting it backwards. Expanding the highway system helped create car culture. The highways made car-centric suburbs possible.

Read a book, you can start with The Power Broker, if you are going to mention Robert Moses.

High density housing and mass transit will reduce our dependence on cars in the future.
March 7, 2013, 6:23 am
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Other Michael, you sound more like you are reading some reflection in the mirror. The car culture already existed before any highway was founded. They were just built to help meet the demands of the growing population with motorists. Most auto-centric suburbs came shortly after WWII, not before it. There was still transit expansion even during the same time the interstate highway system came around. At a national level, driving is still on top, because it's used the most. As for high density housing, that actually does more harm than good for mass transit especially when it can barely meet what is around right now, otherwise known as the super saturation effect where one is going past the limit. As long as there are those who live in areas that aren't served much by transit, they will be driving. The MTA did have a plan for a Second System of the IND, but shelved it when the money for that wasn't available, so blame them, not Moses or the rest of the car culture for that not happening.
March 7, 2013, 5:18 pm
Other Michael from Park Slope says:
You are wrong, Tal

1. The mass exitus to the suburbs happened after the highways were built.

2. The point of high density housing is put it near mass transit. Robert Moses did not do this, so modern urban planners are trying to clean up his mess.
March 7, 2013, 8:18 pm
ty from pps says:
Wow, Tal. You just keep spewing dumb. It's actually pretty awesome how consistent you are.
March 7, 2013, 8:26 pm
ty from pps says:
I mean, honestly, Tal... there is something stupid and wrong with almost every damn sentence in your last comment. It's a thing of beauty!
March 7, 2013, 8:28 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Other Michael, most left for the suburbs either because they were cheaper than living in the city, they just wanted more space, or because of urban decay. I highly doubt that the car was the sole purpose of that, though many suburbs aren't transit oriented. Keep in mind that Homestead Act does allow for 162 acres since it was passed in 1862 and has been enlarged since then. As for high density housing, it's actually the rich that don't want it near mass transit especially if it will involve either affordable or public housing, which they so despise being near them.
March 7, 2013, 9:07 pm
old time brooklyn from slope says:
the exodus to the burbs started when the darkies invaded
fuled by he changes in welfare laws spearheaded by the lindsay adminstraton - also why would not people who grew up in the depression , fought in wwii not want some peace and quiet - next time you go to a beach, take the belt, west side h'way, gwb , bbt curse r moses -
March 7, 2013, 9:09 pm
ty from pps says:
The HOMESTEAD ACT!!??

Seriously?! Tal... What the F*ck does the Homestead Act have to do with ANYTHING?! Oh, God you are just straight-up crazy.

So, there was a lot of homesteading on Long Island in 1952? And suburban Baltimore? I suppose Pleasantville was established as a homesteader's community, right?

Just shut up. Yes. I'm "censoring" you. I want you to stop saying random stupid things. You brand of stupid is painful to the rest of humanity.
March 7, 2013, 9:24 pm
ty from pps says:
Sorry, I have to go out now. I have to fill up my car with leaded gasoline.
March 7, 2013, 9:24 pm
Other Michael from Park Slope says:
Go read a book, tal
March 8, 2013, 6:03 am
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
The bottom line is that there are ways to make streets safer without giving either side the royal screw job. Just enforce what everyone is supposed to follow, and everyone will be safe. If you can't do the time, then don't do the crime. When I am talking about enforcement, I am talking about cyclists and pedestrians as well. Why should only group, which is the motorists, be subject to laws while the rest are exempt from them? On a side note, the Miller Highway wasn't torn down because it was no longer needed, it was because it falling apart on just too expensive to fix, so it was demolished instead, which happened to be cheaper.
March 8, 2013, 7:02 pm
Other Michael from Park Slope says:
Relay Tal

Have you driven on PPW lately. I have. It is safer for pedestrians, cyclists and CAR DRIVERS. Nobody is getting screwed. Traffic moves steadily at just below the speed limit. I know, I drive my car there a few times a week.

But if you are bringing up one group of people who are exempt from the laws, we should be talking about motorists. Virtually none of them ever get ticketed for speeding.

Nobody is getting screwed, Tal. Lives are being saved.
March 9, 2013, 4:59 am
ty from pps says:
Who wants to give Tal the "royal screw job"? Maybe we could make a little outing to Pleasantville.
March 9, 2013, 11:26 am
EFW from Kensington, Brooklyn says:
As a motorist, cyclist and pedestrian (not at the same time of course) of Ocean Parkway, I think it's fair to say that any of the 3 can be partially or completely at fault depending on the specific incident. As a driver, I love getting onto OP and syncing with the lights so that I essentially never have to come to a complete stop--makes my ——ing day. However this does require me to sometimes speed up to catch a green or yellow light. This is pretty much not the right thing to do, and the unfortunately the biggest thing that has stopped me from doing this is when I'm approaching an intersection with a camera that takes pictures of cars speeding through lights. This is terrible, as I should rather be thinking of the safety of pedestrians first and foremost. As a pedestrian, I know when I have the light and when I don't. I'm young with good vision so I can sprint across the street if I need to. But certainly elderly people who rely on walkers, canes or trust that a vehicle will follow speed limits do not have that luxury. Sometimes they do try to get a head start when the North/South bound lanes have a red light...and then almost get hit by cars speeding up to the turning lane (from mid street) just to make that yellow lighted turn. Let's face it, OP is not a commercial road (no trucks or commercial vehicles allowed) and most of our drivers are either livery cabs speeding to make their dollar or just self-absorbed douche bags with their blue tooth and blasted radios. Drivers are in their own bubble and rarely care about the welfare of others when they change lanes without signaling, speed, or honk at pedestrians who are crossing too slow for them. It's a shame. As a bicyclist, um, never saw a problem, think they all pretty much obey traffic laws on OP, minus bicycling on the walkway which is supposed to be for pedestrians only. I think ultimately it comes down to many drivers who only pay attention to 3 colors, red green and yellow, rather than paying attention to pedestrians, bicyclists, or their odometers. Commercial drivers, however, do know how to multitask in this way at all times, which sort of makes Coney Island Avenue a safer place to walk, jog or bike---when it really should be the other way around. Maybe adding more cameras to intersections like 18th Ave, Ave S, Foster ave, or whatever's clever would be enough to deter a great deal of wreckless driving-- or better yet, take wreckless drivers OFF Ocean Parkway.
June 25, 2013, 12:14 pm

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