The Automobile Association of America (AAA) is advocating for an immediate redesign of the Ed Koch Queensboro Bridge. Within a two month time span, there have been three serious auto accidents on a dangerous ramp off the bridge with a hair-pin curve. One accident in late March resulted in the death of an innocent pedestrian.
Robert Sinclair, of AAA New York, stated, “It might, perhaps, take some sort of re-engineering of the roadway itself. It’s a tricky maneuver, a so-called slalom maneuver. A vehicle has to make a right turn followed by a quick left.”
The city’s Department of Transportation has already taken some steps to improve safety on the ramp. Recently it installed white rumble strips, warnings signs, barricades and flashing lights in an attempt to alert drivers of the need to drive slowly and carefully. These measures, however, failed to prevent yet another crash last month.
Maura McCarthy, DOT Queens Commissioner, urged drivers to slow down stating that speeding likely contributed to all three accidents. An anti-speeding campaign has also been launched by the city to increase driver awareness about the dangers of speeding.
Lack of proper lighting may also have been a factor since the three accidents all occurred between 4 and 5:30 a.m. The city will be doing further analysis of the accident-prone area in light of the most recent crash.
Hopefully officials will move quickly to make further safety improvements and prevent additional car accidents. Sinclair urges the city to “Act and act now.”