Showing posts with label cyclists. Show all posts
Showing posts with label cyclists. Show all posts

Friday, September 20, 2019

Report: Cops blame cyclist for being assaulted on his bike

A cyclist who says he was knocked off his bike while riding on First Avenue is infuriated over the NYPD's response to his assault.

Gothamist has the story of Wilfred Chan, 28, who was riding north on First Avenue Wednesday afternoon when a man, standing in the gray pedestrian median of the crosswalk at Fourth Street, forced him off his bike.

"As I was approaching, we made eye contact, and I noticed he was staring pretty intensely at me," Chan said. Chan initially had been cycling in the bike lane, but says he swerved out into the car lane to avoid pedestrians standing in the bike lane. "I was going 20 MPH so it didn't make sense to be in the bike lane," he added. "I was comfortably keeping pace with traffic, and I had the green light."

As he passed the intersection at Fourth Street, Chan says the man stepped out from the crosswalk and kicked him off his bike. He swerved left into the orange barrier between the car and bike lanes, crashed, flipped over and landed in the bike lane on his head. As a result of the fall, he was bleeding from a gash on his forehead; he injured his elbow; and his bike was mangled, with the front wheel and handle bars twisted.


By this point, a crowd of bystanders had gathered, several of whom had witnessed what happened to Chan. When the man tried to leave, Chan says some onlookers tried to keep him there, and a fight broke out, with several punches thrown. At this point, it attracted the attention of some nearby NYPD officers from the 9th Precinct.

Chan says he told them what had happened, but was met with immediate skepticism and aggressive questioning. According to Chan, the officers accused him of changing his story because he wasn't sure if the man kicked his bike or put his foot in front of the bike.

"They immediately started gaslighting me," Chan said. "They had an idea already of what happened, and anything I said did not matter. They approached with a demeanor of deep suspicion and skepticism at everything I said, I felt like I was the one being interrogated rather than the person who kicked me off my bike."

Parting thoughts...

"To me, the main point is just the utter and willful inadequacy of the police as a system for keeping the city safe for cyclists," he said. "We face terrifying threats every day just trying to get from point A to B and the city has repeatedly shown it does not give a fuck. The cops' attitude to me totally confirmed this — the fact that I was on a bike meant I had no rights. That if I got hurt, even if someone attacked me, it was my fault."

Read the full post here.

EVG photo of First Avenue and Fourth Street from earlier this summer.

Previously on EV Grieve:
Reader reports: The NYPD forcibly stops a Citi Biker on Avenue A for his own safety

Wednesday, July 3, 2019

EVG Etc.: City finally vowing to (temporarily) do something about reckless drivers

[Ghost bike for East Village resident Chaim Joseph]

Now that 15 cyclists have been killed by cars or trucks on NYC streets already this year (up from 10 all of 2018), the NYPD yesterday announced that it is launching a citywide bicycle safety plan.

Per The Wall Street Journal:

Officers will step up enforcement of vehicles that speed, run red lights or fail to yield to pedestrians, NYPD officials said. They will also increase the ticketing of drivers who are texting or talking on their phone without a headset, the officials said.

NYPD Commissioner James O’Neill also said at an unrelated press conference Tuesday that officers will also make sure bike lanes are clear of vehicles, especially police cars. Officers caught using bike lanes illegally may face a variety of internal administrative consequences, such as a reprimand from a supervisor or a disciplinary letter, he said.


“We absolutely have an emergency on our hands,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said Monday night during a television interview.

The enforcement will run through July 21.


• NYPD announces plan to temporarily improve bike safety after slew of cyclist deaths (Daily News)

• NYPD Promises To Crack Down On Reckless Drivers For A Few Weeks (Gothamist)

• NYPD’s Reckless Driver ‘Crackdown’ is a Breezy Three-Week Affair (Streetsblog)

• DOT’s Forthcoming ‘Cycling Safety Plan’ Won’t Likely Break the Car Culture (Streetsblog)

The NYPD's MO has been to ticket cyclists instead of drivers in areas where a fatality occurred.

Meanwhile, coming up next week, Transportation Alternatives is staging a “die-in” in Washington Square Park ...

Chaim Joseph, a 72-year-old East Village resident, was one of the 15 cycling victims this year. He was struck by a private oil truck shortly before 6 a.m. on Feb. 4 while he was riding in the bike lane near the intersection of Eighth Avenue and West 45th Street.

The NYPD arrested 56-year-old Queens resident Kenneth Jackson, who worked for Brooklyn-based Approved Oil company. Jackson was charged with failure to yield and failure to exercise due care. He faces a maximum of 30 days in jail — although such sentences are rare, as Streetsblog noted.

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

[Updated] Reader report: Police SUV strikes cyclist on 1st Avenue and St. Mark's Place

According to several readers, an Interceptor SUV from the NYPD's 9th Precinct was traveling north along First Avenue — with its siren on and lights flashing — when it struck a cyclist crossing at St. Mark's Place this afternoon just before 4.

Witnesses believe that the cyclist, riding an e-bike and heading east, had the green light.

The images here are screengrabs from a 6-minute video that a reader shared showing the aftermath of the collision. (From the look of the crowd that had gathered, multiple people were filming this.)

The force of the impact propelled the cyclist into an area on First Avenue where a Verizon crew was working. One man on a hoverboard, a constant presence in the video, says: "He almost flew inside the truck! That's how hard they hit him."

From the video, the cyclist seems to be in a great deal of pain, screaming when the EMTs try to place him on a stretcher. He motions that he broke a leg. (The reader claims that the NYPD tried to make the man get up before the EMTs arrived, though that wasn't on the video.)

You can see the indentation where the SUV struck the cyclist...

We'll update when we receive more information about what happened and the cyclist's condition.

Updated 5/31

Patch follows up our story with a few more details.

The police were responding to a 911 call in which a 15-year-old boy was slashed at 14th Street and First Avenue.

The cyclist, 36, was taken to Bellevue with back and leg injuries.

And: "After the incident, cops slapped the e-biker with a summons for failing to yield to an emergency vehicle and operating an e-bike."

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

About the NYPD cracking down on bikes without bells Saturday in Tompkins Square Park

[Screengrab from YouTube]

In case you were wondering about the large NYPD presence in Tompkins Square Park on Saturday afternoon... an estimated 50 cops turned up in the Park ahead of the sixth annual "420 Bake and Race" biking event.

According to published reports, organizer Shardy Nieves was arrested before the event started.

Per Streetsblog:

Nieves said as he walking into the park, he was greeted by the police officers — and one officer showed him a folder full of social media posts promoting the event, whose name is a cheeky pun for marijuana use, though Nieves claimed it actually refers to baked goods and pizza that the riders enjoy after the race.

Nonetheless, he was arrested on what cops said was an outstanding open container warrant.

The timing of his arrest the day of his racing event was suspicious, according to Nieves, who said he was pulled over this past summer for running a red light and was told his record was clean.

Following his arrest, police reportedly took Nieves to his home borough in the Bronx, where a judge dismissed the charges.

Meanwhile, the NYPD wasn't done in Tompkins Square Park.

Back to Streetsblog:

Police also wrote up cyclists, most of whom were kids of color, for not having bells on their bikes.

Cops confiscated their bikes and brought them to the local [9th] Precinct. Several kids had to wait hours to get them back, according to social media reports and one of the victims.

The NYPD left Tompkins Square Park for Union Square.

You can read the account of the day via this post at Gothamist. (There's also this 30-minute video taken during the NYPD's time in Tompkins.)

Council Speaker Corey Johnson shared his thoughts on the NYPD's actions on Saturday in this tweet...

Safe street advocates wonder why the city won't give the same attention to reckless drivers. Citing NYPD statistics, Gothamist reported that traffic fatalities in New York City this year have increased by 41 percent compared to the same time period of 2018.

Said City Councilmember Ydanis Rodriguez, chair of the council's Transportation Committee: "There are other priorities that the men and women of the NYPD should have, especially fighting crimes. Targeting cyclists should not be their priority. ...We don't have a history of cyclists being involved in crashes in a number that is alarming. So I hope the NYPD stops this type of practice and focuses their resources to fight crimes."

In a statement to Gothamist, NYPD spokesperson Detective Denise Moroney said:

The detail was in response to a large gathering of bicyclists called “420 Bake and Race” advertising smoking marijuana and traveling on New York City roadways to various locations. There was a total of four summons written for no bell on a bicycle (1236-B of the VTL) in the area of the park. There were a total of four bicycles were taken into custody for the violation and once the violation was corrected (bell affixed to the bicycle) all bicycles were returned in a 24-hour period. One person was taken into custody for an outstanding warrant. Members of the public and the NYPD have a shared responsibility to ensure safety for all navigating the streets of the city.

The "420 Bake and Race" ended up happening after all, just a little later than originally planned and without as many participants.

• NYPD Intimidates and Cracks Down on Cyclists For No Good Reason (Streetsblog)

• NYPD Seizes Bikes Without Bells, Arrests Cyclist Leading Group Ride (Gothamist)

Sunday, March 24, 2019

At the start of the 3 Blind Mice alley cat for Aurilla Lawrence

Friends of cyclist Aurilla Lawrence held a 3 Blind Mice alley cat in her honor yesterday. The ride also served as a benefit for Lawrence (aka Aurilla Gorilla), a 25-year-old bicycle messenger who was fatally struck by a hit-and-run truck driver in Williamsburg on Feb. 28. (Read more about her here.)

Derek Berg shared these photos at the start of the race in Tompkins Square Park yesterday afternoon...

Lawrence's friends are also planning to adopt a bench in her name in Tompkins Square Park.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Post discovers that cyclists often run the light at 1st Avenue and St. Mark's Place

From the Post today:

For New York cyclists, red lights means go almost 80 percent of the time — despite an NYPD crackdown and the recent deaths of two pedestrians hit by bikes, The Post has found.

From 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday, reporters at three busy intersections observed 1,006 cyclists encounter a red signal — often with pedestrians in the crosswalks — and a staggering 796 of them passed through before it turned green.

As your can see from the graphic, First Avenue and St. Mark's Place was one of the intersections where a Post reporter hung out for 8 hours watching.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Watch the NYPD arrest a man for being too loud on a bicycle

During the last monthly Critical Mass ride, the NYPD scooter patrol arrested cyclist Mellow Yellow on East 14th Street at Union Square... he spent the next 24 hours in jail. The NYPD apparently asked him to turn down the music on his bike... and you can watch what transpires in this video that just arrived on YouTube...

This comes at a time when activists have been calling for safer streets throughout the city ... to date this year, eight children under 8 years old have been killed by automobiles in New York City. (Watch a video about this here.)

Saturday, November 24, 2012


From the EVG Twitter account... pretty empty streets this morning ... this one was on First Avenue between St. Mark's and East Ninth Street... the other was on East Ninth Street just west of Second Avenue...

Friday, September 23, 2011

About the sign to the bicyclist who hit the woman on Avenue A and Third Street

Have you seen this sign on Avenue A at Third Street? Probably a good story behind it, huh?

Well, yes there is! And our friend Jen Doll at Runnin' Scared has the details. It concerns Cynthia Wright, an actress who also teaches at NYU. A cyclist clipped her while she was crossing Avenue A. She sustained multiple injuries, though was able to continue on her journey. The police on the scene made some anti-Bloomberg cycling comments. The cyclist apologized. And now that Wright, a cyclist herself, has had some time to rest and think about what happened...

Her hopes in placing the sign are that the guy, who she describes as a "handsome young hipster guy" with dark hair, helmetless, and probably in his 20s, riding a black bike with a thin frame, will see it and contact her. "It's come to me since," she said, "If I were he, I would be willing to help this person by buying her a new pair of pants, help her with having to see the osteopathic physician, and the other work."

So, if you're reading this "handsome young hipster guy," then you may have to buy some pants and what not.

Read the whole post here.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

[Updated]: Cyclist struck and killed on Delancey

A reader just sends us the news. It happened near the Bowery Ballroom. "Too horrible for photos," said the reader.

Another tweet says the person killed was a pedestrian.

Another reader says the victim is male.

Other news sources are checking in...

6:19 p.m. — The Lo-Down is at the scene and reports that a cyclist was struck and killed by a truck.

BoweryBoogie is on the scene too ... and notes that the area is locked down.

Per DNAinfo: "It appeared that the biker had a problem with his chain, according to the sources."

6 a.m. — The Associated Press says the victim is a 52-year-old man.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Bike lane patrol

EV Grieve correspondent Bobby Williams noted yesterday that police officers were on Second Avenue at Fifth Street waiting for cyclists to run the red light... the fellow pictured apparently didn't stop, and was let off with a warning.

Let's not mention this to samo, OK? Previously.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Jimmy McMillan just lost the cyclist vote

Jimmy McMillan, the rent is too damn, blah, blah guy, is running for president. He's even holding a news conference in Tompkins Square Park next week to announce his candidacy.

Meanwhile! The Local East Village conducted a Q-and-A with McMillan ... to an excerpt!

Bike lane use is a big issue in the East Village. How would you handle that issue?

Get rid of them. You have cars running up on bicycle lanes – people are getting run over. These are idiots! There are not enough bicyclists. I did a personal count. In one week in the East Village on First Avenue and Second Avenue, there were about 25 people on each avenue. It’s not enough. They’re better for states with warmer climates, like in Florida. You cannot have bicycle lanes where there is snow.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

A post about bicycles and sidewalks

On Sunday afternoon, a reader sent along the following photos from near Clinton and Stanton...

"Cops riding on to sidewalk for a rogue bicyclist smack down. Really."

And the police issued the cyclist a ticket for riding on the sidewalk.

Meanwhile, I'm reminded of this photo from East 12th Street on Dave Winer's Flickr account after the blizzard of 12-26/27, 2010... The headline is "Bike-rider tailgates pedestrians, on sidewalk"

He writes, in part:

When I see a situation like this, I wish I had a can of bright orange spray paint to mark this guy's bike. Nothing that would hurt him physically. But this is crazy. Old frail people use the sidewalk. They can't compete with young people on bikes, and they should be able to use the city too.

To the people's credit in front of him, they didn't make way for him, despite his pleading, and he had to pedal at a walker's pace to the corner.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

A chivalrous cyclist

From Craigslist:

Bicyclist Saves Girl w. Luggage - w4m - 24 (East Village)

A thank you to the nice man in a gray hoodie and red scarf who used his bicycle to block me from the angry homeless man outside my building as I struggled to get my luggage through the door.

Let the weary traveler buy you a drink?

Friday, September 3, 2010

The 8 types of cyclists you'll encounter on East Village streets

At several junctures during the summer, we've had posts updating the developments on the new First Avenue and Second Avenue bike lanes... and each post prompted a spirited debate in the comments: Pedestrians vs. cyclists. Cyclists vs. cyclists. Everybody vs. cyclists. Seemingly.

(You can find some of those posts here ... and here. And here.)

In many cases, all cyclists were dumped into one large "all cyclists are bad" category. While I like nothing more than grotesque stereotypes (woo!), it just seemed too easy to have people list problems that they've had with individual cyclists, which in turn made it seem as if anyone on a bike was a law-breaking cycling commando out for blood.

So! I enlisted the help of someone who knows more about cycling than I do — The Cycling Friend of EV Grieve (CFOEVG), who helped create and write these eight categories. However, CFOEVG is not totally confident that this list is a wholly accurate depiction of cyclists on the streets. So our intention is to illustrate that there is more to the NYC cycling community other than just 100 percent "rogue bikers."

Feel free to add your own categories. Plus, it's probably fair to, at some point, categorize the different types of pedestrians, motorists and bloggers too...

So now, to the list:

Professionals — Those who work for a business outfit or courier firm. As CFOEVG says, they are "ironically, dangerous riders."

Restaurant Delivery Workers — Often cooks or dishwashers who are put on a bike. Not to be confused with "all bikers." Some of the worst offenders for sidewalk riding.

Pro/Amateur Racers — Usually on their way to a race, a park or New Jersey. Members of this group have a tendency to avoid bike lanes because they can't go fast enough in them.

Triathletes — Typical greenway-variety, some of the most hated riders since they ride so poorly and can be so rude, says CFOEVG. Generally not a problem on surface streets.

Weekend Warriors — Usually too slow to be of harm, but can end up on sidewalks. Occasionally a problem, but not to be confused with your average cyclists.

Responsible commuters — Group members here are aware that cyclists are being watched, so they won't block crosswalks or ride on sidewalks. Increasingly, the majority of people you see riding.

Irresponsible commuters — "Too good/too cool" for bike lanes who like to say that bike lanes are for wusses, but are actually more dangerous to pedestrians.

Tourists — Uh-oh! Run! Tourists ride the wrong way in the park, too fast on the sidewalk. Just bad all around. Especially when the tourists are riding and unfolding a map at the same time.

P.S. As a bonus for making it this far... From 1986, the "Cocktail" of bike messenger movies...