The Q at Parkside

(for those for whom the Parkside Q is their hometrain)

News and Nonsense from the Brooklyn neighborhood of Lefferts and environs, or more specifically a neighborhood once known as Melrose Park. Sometimes called Lefferts Gardens. Or Prospect-Lefferts Gardens. Or PLG. Or North Flatbush. Or Caledonia (west of Ocean). Or West Pigtown. Across From Park Slope. Under Crown Heights. Near Drummer's Grove. The Side of the Park With the McDonalds. Jackie Robinson Town. Home of Lefferts Manor. West Wingate. Near Kings County Hospital. Or if you're coming from the airport in taxi, maybe just Flatbush is best.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

UPDATE: Terrible Tragedy on Empire Blvd

UPDATE: The Q has since learned that the child broke away from his mother and ended up between two "parked" cars. One had a driver and was moving. I relate this story since many people asked about speeding vehicles, but that was not the case in the horrible accident. The driver initially drove off but circled back. The child lived for a short while but succumbed fairly soon after the trauma, as he was pronounced DOA at Kings County.

This is actually the third awful car-related tragedy that the Q knows about this past year - one in Ft. Greene, one in Park Slope, and now this (I know there are others but I can't recall offhand). It's something I think about all the time with small children - it really is dangerous out there, and kids need to learn to be afraid of the street under ANY circumstances. It's something we all take for granted - the body instinctively knows when danger is present, after many repeated experiences. But the kids aren't so well developed. I'm so sad for the family, and for the driver, who I'm sure will be severely traumatized. It really is a nightmare come true.

From the 71st comes a story almost too horrific to share. But here goes. Directly from Vinnie, because I can't even bear to write it:

Today, March 16, 2014 at approximately 9PM a 5 year old boy was struck by a vehicle on Empire Blvd. between Nostrand to Rogers Avenue. The child was rushed to Kings County Hospital where he succumbed to his injuries. The accident is currently under investigation by the NYPD Highway Accident Investigation Unit.  Please remember the family in your thoughts and prayers.

The Q 


Carmen said...

This is such a tremendous tragedy. My condolences to the family.

Can we please now (finally) have an honest conversation about jaywalking? Just the other day, my family and I were driving down Flatbush and there was a lady crossing in the middle of the street. She was standing on the double yellow lines and her stroller was in the car lane! We honked and she threw up her middle finger, yelling "who the fuck are you honking at". Not to mention the people (and kids) who dart out between parked cars and into traffic. Its terrifying to drive around here, especially at night.

Unknown said...

My condolences to the family as well.

My sister resides in California and every time she comes to visit me, she refuses to ride in a car with us; reason being the jaywalking is out of control. People get ticketed heavily in California for this act, and I think that's a law we should pursue vigorously in NY. People have no regards for law and order around here. This is the type of incident she was always afraid of.

The Snob said...

I don't need a Big Gulp, I don't smoke, and I'm happy to share the road with Citi Bikes and traffic calming features. But I love jaywalking. I'm sorry, it's New York cultural identity.

Frank said...

I don't think jaywalking is the problem here.

It sounds like the crash was caused by the driver backing up from being double-parked, without looking, at sufficient speed to fatally run over a kid. Let's not blame the victim.

Clarkson FlatBed said...

Every time we jaywalk to save a few seconds we suggest to kids it's okay. Is it okay? I'm starting to move over to the old guy side on this one. I see parents dragging their kids through the craziest situations to cross streets.

I certainly am not looking to assign blame in this terrible situation. Just pointing out how a single bad choice (driver, pedestrian, child, parent) can mean the difference between life and death.

The Snob said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
The Snob said...

Respect the jaywalk, I say:
Never with headphones
Never on the phone
Never with children (which, admittedly, is tough when it's your own block).

ElizabethC said...

Is it THAT hard to just wait and cross at the light? I mean, NYC has some seriously inattentive drivers. I try to ask myself that when I'm tempted to jaywalk--- where is it that I am going that I need to potentially risk my life to get there FIVE minutes sooner? Why is it such a "NYC" trait that waiting literally a few minutes is so hard? (And yes, I'm tapping my fingers at the long coffee line like everyone else).

diak said...

In the situation described by Carmen above—and similiar cases where morons disguised as parents drag their offspring into traffic—I wouldn't charge them with jaywalking. I would charge them with child endangerment. Maybe being put on notice that a second or third incident could result in their children being taken away would cause them to behave with an ounce of caution. Maybe.

But I see this behavior daily. Especially on Flatbush between the Wendy's and the north entrance to the PP subway station. The lights/crosswalk is at most 20 or 30 steps away but apparently that's too difficult or their kids' lives aren't worth the extra effort.

(I'm not saying this was a factor in Sunday's tragedy. There I don't think we have all the facts yet.)

The Snob said...

Diak, that stretch of roadway you reference is like crack to a jaywalker. Maybe it's the vista you get up and down flatbush when crossing in front of Fatale Bert's... I myself don't know why I do it.

diak said...

Some welcome traffic safety data: In the 71st, tickets for moving violations are up 192% over last year. (Feb. 2013, 73 tickets; Feb. 2014, 213 tickets).
Long long overdue, but a good first step.
I hope the next step is ticketing the wrong-way, stoplight-ignoring cyclists. Then the nothing-can-stop-me pedestrians...

Anonymous said...

Re: .The lights/crosswalk is at most 20 or 30 steps away

It's more than 30 steps away. I counted them last night when I was coming from the train station. :)