19 people died in 167,686 NYC motor vehicle accidents in January 2019 . More than half of the fatalities were pedestrians. 3 of the fatalities were cyclists, 3 were passengers and 3 others died behind the wheel. This number compared to 20 fatalities in December and respectively 11, 18, 17, 13, 21 and 28 in January 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014 and 2013. This is the highest amount of traffic deaths for a month of January in 5 years. (click on graphs for full size view)
For the third consecutive years NYC auto accident injuries in January stayed above 4,000. 4,347 people were injured in motor vehicle accidents in New York City in January compared to 5,361 in December 2017 and respectively 4,351, 4,383, 3,624, 3,449, 3,899 and 3,993 in January 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014 and 2013.
Pedestrian fatalities increased by more than 40% in January 2019 compared to January 2018. However the number of pedestrian fatalities was still half what it was before Vision Zero started. 10 pedestrians died in traffic accidents in New York City in January 2019 compared to 7 in January 2018 and 20 in January 2013. A month before in December 2018, 16 pedestrian died in traffic fatalities. The period covering October November December and January is the most dangerous for pedestrians because the sun goes down a little bit after 4 pm and pedestrians become less visible by motorists during the rush hours. The city is running preventive campaigns to raise awareness about this problem. It looks like the campaign was more effective last year than this year as monthly pedestrian injuries never went above 10 during the entire period of October November December and January. This year, except for October monthly pedestrian fatalities were back above 10 during the fall and winter months.
After reaching a record high at 1,279 last December, pedestrian injuries went down to 1,010 in January. This number is higher than the previous year when they reached 987 but lower than in January 17 when 1083 pedestrians were injured in accidents. While over the last 6 years the pedestrian injury trend is still slightly declining, the 3 month moving average is at its highest over the same period of time which is concerning.
January 2019 was an unusually bad month for cyclists. The number of bicycle accidents in New York City in January 2019 was at its highest ever since Vision Zero started and was even higher than before Vision started. The NYPD recorded 262 bicycle accidents in New York City last January compared to respectively 226, 241, 224, 159, 149 and 248 in January 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014 and 2013.
After a period of 3 months during which no bicycle accidents fatalities were recorded, bicycle accidents fatalities reached a record high in January 2019 with 3 cyclist deaths compared to respectively 1, 1 2, 1, 1 and 0 in January 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014 and 2013.
Monthly NYC Bicycle accident injuries went above 200 fort the first time in January. 210 cyclists were injured in accidents in January. Before Vision Zero started in January 2013, 190 people suffered injuries in bicycle accidents. This number went down to 116 and 115 in January 2014 and 2015 then it gradually increased again every year with 163 bike injuries in January 2016, 179 in January 2017 and 183 in January 2018.
While looking at trends, while the number of bicycle accidents and injuries are on a moderate rising trend over the last 6 years, the fatality trend flattened.
Motorcycle accidents also were at a record high in January. The NYPD recorded 74 motorcycle accidents last January compared to 49 for the same month a year earlier. This is the second time that the number of motorcycle accidents in January is above the pre-Vision Zero numbers. In January 2013 there were 55 motorcycle accidents. Then Vision Zero started and this number went down to 32 in January 2014, 28 in January 2015 and then slightly back up to 40 in January 2016. A year later in January 2017 it went up to 65 and then back down to 49 in January 2018. Motorcycle accidents are the most correlated to the weather. The month of January wasn’t that cold this year, therefore more people may have been using their motorcycle than usual which as a result may have lead to an unusually high number of accidents.
Bus accidents statistics are the most difficult to interpret as they are very different from one month to the other. The trendline indicates a very slight increase for the long term. For the month of January they were low compared to previous months of January. There were 525 bus accidents in January compared to respectively 622, 541, 649, 522, 623 and 441 in January 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, and 2013.
Truck accidents were above 1,200 in January for the third consecutive year. There were 1,280 truck accidents in New York City in January 2019 compared to 1,350 the same month of the previous year. Between January 2016 and January 2017 the number of truck accidents almost doubled in the City and continued to increase in 2018. It seems like they may have stabilized in January 2019. The number of truck accidents is still worrisome but at least it hasn’t increased more.