Letter to the editor
Re: the January 23 article, "Solving a Deadly Traffic Puzzle":
Bicycle lanes don't necessarily cut down on pedestrian accidents. Just observe the lane now running along First Avenue and you will see that about 50 percent of all bike riders do not follow the traffic rules. They prefer to go through red lights if they see no side vehicular traffic and weave through any pedestrians that are crossing. Some also ride the wrong direction in the bike lane. Now pedestrians on First Avenue have to watch out for cars and for bikes and I perceive no slowing in car traffic because of the bikes, just a speed up in bike traffic.
Why doesn't the city really enforce the law against driving with cell phones in hand and turning without making a signal? Many drivers flaunt these rules. The danger of driving and turning while on a cell phone (or grabbing for one) is obvious. Turning without a signal completely throws off pedestrians crossing with the light and also surprises any car behind the one turning. This suggestion does not require any new law, any special permissions, any new studies: just have a few traffic agents stand on the corners of any major avenue and start handing out tickets. By the way. don't preannounce this policy as a special crackdown day as has been done a few times in the past, just make it standard policy. The city will garner the revenue for as long as it takes the drivers to lose their money, potentially their licenses, and get the message.
Bob Raber, Upper East Side resident
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