A 25 year old bicyclist was fatally struck by a hit and run truck driver in NYC. Aurilla Lawrence was fatally hit by a gas tanker truck near the intersection of Broadway and Rodney Street in Williamsburg last Thursday night around 11:30 pm. The driver fled the scene of the accident and so far is still at large. Lawrence was a beloved member of the bike messengers community who nicknamed her “Aurilla Gorilla”.
Last Sunday around 200 bike messengers and street safety advocates organized a memorial ride on the streets of New York to commemorate the victim. Bicyclists met at Lenox Avenue in Harlem and rode their bikes South on Fifth Avenue toward Union Square. The Union Square Park is an area where Lawrence used to hang with fellow bike messengers in between deliveries. As a tribute to her, the bike-a-thon made a stop at the park and participants raised their bikes to her memory.
Then the 200 cyclists continued their way toward Brooklyn. They crossed the Williamsburg bridge to ultimately arrive at the location of the accident where a ghost bike and a makeshift memorial were installed. The participants gathered around the memorial and paid tribute to their beloved co-worker.
A pedestrian was fatally struck by a pick up truck in New York City last Friday around 5 pm. 51 year old Jose Rubi was crossing Maspeth Avenue in Bushwick when he was hit by a 46 year old man driving a 2015 Ford pick up. The driver stayed at the scene of the accident and wasn’t charged. According to the police, the driver was attempting to make a left turn onto Vandervoort Ave when he struck Rubi. He told the police that he didn’t see the victim.
The police blamed the victim for crossing “mid block”. However it is unclear how the police could determine that the pedestrian was crossing mid-block while the driver testified that that the accident occurred as he was making a left turn at the intersection.
After the accident, the pedestrian was rushed to a nearby hospital but he didn’t survive his injuries.
Thankfully nobody was injured or killed in another NYC accident involving a garbage truck belonging to a private company. On Saturday morning, 40 year old Anthony Castaldo was drunk behind the wheel of his garbage truck. He was driving on 60th Street between 19th Street and 20th Street in Borough Park, Brooklyn, when he lost control of his vehicle, slammed into 8 cars, then a tree before ending up in the front yard of a private property. He tried to run away on foot but he was quickly caught by the police. He was charged with leaving the scene of an accident, drunken and reckless driving and resisting arrest. Castaldo was immediately suspended by his employer, Viking Sanitation, a private company with a garage in Bath Beach.
A month ago, a 78 year old woman had her leg crushed by a private garbage truck in Brooklyn (see previous blog). Two month ago a pedestrian was killed by another private garbage truck driver. The driver had killed another person with his truck 6 months before but was still behind the wheel (see previous blog).
Private carting companies are responsible for the deaths of 43 pedestrians between 2010 and 2017. They have a terrible reputation, forcing drivers to work extended hours and cover large geographical zones. How many innocent people will still suffer terrible injuries or die until the City does something to strengthen the regulations for these reckless companies?
A private garbage truck struck and seriously injured a 78 year old woman who was crossing the street yesterday in New York City . The hauling truck that belongs to MIST Entreprise was making a left turn from East Fourth Street onto 18th Ave in Kensington, Brooklyn, when it hit the pedestrian. The accident occurred around 11:00 am. Witnesses saw the victim being pinned under the wheel of the truck. She was screaming and her leg was completely mangled. The 78 year old woman was rushed to the hospital with serious injuries. The driver of the truck stayed at the scene of the accident and so far hasn’t been charged.
The truck that crashed into the pedestrian has a history of reckless driving. According to city records, over the last two years, the truck was cited 5 times for running red lights. Privater garbage truck haulers have a very bad reputation in New York City. Drivers are forced to drive long hours and cover large routes, making them prone to reckless driving. Between 2010 and 2017, 43 New Yorkers died after being struck by private carting companies’garbage trucks. Organized labor believes that the Business Integrity Commission that regulates them is not doing enough to prevent this carnage. Not even a month ago another elderly resident from the Bronx was fatally struck by a private garbage truck. Police investigated the accident and discovered that the driver had previously fatally ran over a colleague with his truck 6 months before. He lied to the police about it and was still allowed to drive without being charged. (see previous blog).
An alleged drunk truck driver crashed into the car of a pizza deliveryman in Brooklyn, NYC. Thankfully the deliveryman had gotten out of his car seconds before the crash. The accident occurred around 3:30 am last Thursday morning in Williamsburg. The deliveryman had just parked his car on Borinquen Place near Rodney Street. As he just exited it, a white box truck slammed into it. The truck driver who was allegedly drunk previously struck a fence at Public School 319 on Rodney Street and was speeding away from this first accident. He then struck the car, took down a tree and ended into a scaffolding structure causing it to partially collapse. Read more in the NY Daily News
A box truck slammed into a store front injuring two people in New York City last week. The truck accident occurred on Utica Ave near Church Ave on East Flatbush in Brooklyn, NYC. A video surveillance captured the frightening accident. A box truck driver who wanted to park waited for a previous car to leave a spot in front of a 99 cents store. After the car left, the truck driver started to maneuver to get in the parking spot. All of sudden he just lost control of the vehicle, knocked down a parking sign and crashed into the 99 Cents store. A mother and her child walking on the sidewalk were almost killed. The child was ok but the mother was injured and transported to the hospital. The driver was found unresponsive in the cabin of the truck. He may have suffered a seizure. He was transported to the hospital in critical condition. Read more in the NY Daily News
Later on at night in New York City another driver was also found unresponsive in his car after he lost control of his vehicle. Unfortunately he couldn’t be saved and died at the hospital. 54 year old Daniel Rainis was exiting the Grand Central Parkway at Winchester Boulevard in Bellerose, Queens, when he veered off the parkway into the woods. No other vehicles were involved in the fatal accident. Read more Here
A garbage truck fatally hit a bicyclist in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, NYC early Saturday morning. The driver didn’t stop. 27-year-old Neftaly Ramirez had just finished his shift at a Brooklyn Pizzeria. He was biking home to the Lower East Side around 12:30 am. As he was riding on Franklin Street near Noble Street in Greenpoint, a garbage truck driving South on Franklin hit him. The garbage truck driver continued on his way leaving the bicyclist dying in the street behind him. The investigation is still ongoing and the police haven’t apprehended the truck driver yet. Therefore it is still unclear if the driver was aware that he hit someone. Ramirez was found by the police with trauma all over his body. He was pronounced dead by EMS soon after their arrival at the scene of the accident.
Franklin Ave in Greeenpoint is a link between Kent Ave and the Pulaski bridge. It is narrow but busy with traffic day and night. According to a local resident, trucks are “flying down the street all night”. There is a shared bike and motor vehicle lane that is completely unprotected (see picture). A large electronic sign was installed at the location of the accident by the police to ask potential witnesses to report information. Detectives were also looking for potential footage from security cameras. So far the police said that the truck that hit Ramirez was green with white with yellow lettering. It was most probably a private garbage truck. Private dump trucks are among the most dangerous vehicles for pedestrians and bicyclists. They have the highest NYC pedestrian-kill rate per mile driven. One may hope that the police may finally launch a safety initiative directed at private garbage trucks but that is not what happening. The police were seen on Sunday afternoon ticketing bicyclists on Franklin Ave.
Read more in Streetblog
A man died in a truck accident in New York City yesterday. The accident occurred yesterday afternoon on the parking lot of Decorama Building & Plumbing Supplies on Metropolitan Ave in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, NYC. A 32 year old customer who was backing up hit 63 year old Hou Li with his flatbed truck. Hou Li, a 63 year old man who was working for Decorama Building & Plumbing Supplies died at the scene of the accident.
Read more in the NY Daily News
A young pedestrian was critically injured in a truck accident in New York City last Thursday around 1:00 pm. The 11 year old girl was in a crosswalk and had the right of way when she was run over by a box truck . The driver, 51 year old Douglas Watson of Maryland, was stoned behind the wheels. He hit the young girl as he was making a left turn from Wythe Ave onto Rutledge in Brooklyn. The girl fell on the ground and the driver ran over her body with the front left wheel. The young pedestrian suffered a collapsed lung, a lacerated spleen and very bad injuries to her torso. She was rushed to the emergency room in critical condition. The driver was arrested by the police. The police found out that the man had one prior sealed arrest in New York City and that he was driving with a suspended licensed. He was charged with operating a motor vehicle while impaired by drugs, aggravated unlicensed operation of a vehicle failure to yield and failure to exercise due care.