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  • Writer's pictureJulia Lizbano

Most Dangerous Intersections for Pedestrians in New York City

Updated: Sep 17, 2023



Pedestrian safety is an ongoing concern in New York City, a bustling metropolis with complex intersections and heavy traffic. As streets get busier and distractions become more prevalent, both for drivers and pedestrians, the risk for accidents grows. This makes it increasingly important for everyone navigating the streets to be aware of the specific locations that are known hotspots for accidents. This blog post aims to shed light on the most dangerous intersections for pedestrians in New York City. By understanding where these hazardous areas are located, you can exercise extra caution and potentially avoid tragic incidents.


Key Takeaways

  • Understanding the Risk: Knowing which intersections are most dangerous can be life-saving information.

  • Be Alert, Stay Safe: Utilize our tips to navigate these hazardous zones more safely.

Top 10 Most Dangerous Intersections in NYC

It's crucial to note that the intersections listed below are highlighted based on available data and studies that focus on pedestrian safety. These locations have a higher-than-average rate of pedestrian-related incidents and should be approached with extreme caution. Always remember, data and conditions can change, so staying alert is the key to your safety.

1. Broadway and West 60th Street, Manhattan

  • Reported Incidents: High frequency of pedestrian injuries and fatalities.

  • Safety Measures in Place: Limited; existing traffic signals may not be sufficient.

  • Tips for Navigating Safely: Stay within the crosswalk and obey pedestrian signals.

2. Flatbush Avenue and Atlantic Avenue, Brooklyn

  • Reported Incidents: Numerous reports of pedestrian accidents.

  • Safety Measures in Place: Traffic lights and crosswalks; however, high traffic volume.

  • Tips for Navigating Safely: Exercise extra caution during rush hours.

3. Tillary Street and Adams Street, Brooklyn

  • Reported Incidents: A significant number of pedestrian injuries.

  • Safety Measures in Place: Some crosswalks and signals but high vehicle speed.

  • Tips for Navigating Safely: Avoid crossing during high-speed traffic times.

4. Queens Boulevard and 71st Avenue, Queens

  • Reported Incidents: Multiple pedestrian accidents reported annually.

  • Safety Measures in Place: Traffic lights, but complex road layout.

  • Tips for Navigating Safely: Wait for a clear path and always use designated crosswalks.

5. 125th Street and Lenox Avenue, Manhattan

  • Reported Incidents: High incidence of pedestrian collisions.

  • Safety Measures in Place: Traffic signals and pedestrian lanes, yet still risky.

  • Tips for Navigating Safely: Be aware of turning vehicles.

6. 14th Street and Sixth Avenue, Manhattan

  • Reported Incidents: Numerous pedestrian injuries and some fatalities.

  • Safety Measures in Place: Adequate signals, but high foot and vehicle traffic.

  • Tips for Navigating Safely: Remain alert for aggressive or distracted drivers.

7. Third Avenue and East 60th Street, Manhattan

  • Reported Incidents: Several pedestrian accidents recorded.

  • Safety Measures in Place: Traffic lights, but frequently ignored by drivers.

  • Tips for Navigating Safely: Make eye contact with drivers before crossing.

8. Delancey Street and Essex Street, Manhattan

  • Reported Incidents: High pedestrian injury rate.

  • Safety Measures in Place: Traffic lights and crosswalks, but confusing intersection layout.

  • Tips for Navigating Safely: Use pedestrian signals and wait for a full stop from vehicles.

9. Fordham Road and Webster Avenue, Bronx

  • Reported Incidents: Notable number of pedestrian accidents.

  • Safety Measures in Place: Limited; high-speed traffic poses risks.

  • Tips for Navigating Safely: Cross only at pedestrian signals and avoid jaywalking.

10. Ninth Avenue and 42nd Street, Manhattan

  • Reported Incidents: Frequent incidents involving pedestrians.

  • Safety Measures in Place: Multiple traffic signals but heavy tourist and local foot traffic.

  • Tips for Navigating Safely: Pay attention to both vehicular and pedestrian traffic.

Knowing which intersections pose the most risk can help you navigate New York City streets more safely. If, however, you find yourself involved in a pedestrian accident at any of these intersections or elsewhere, do not hesitate to seek legal assistance.


The Data Speaks: The Basis for Our List

Understanding the methodology behind our list of dangerous intersections is essential for appreciating the gravity of the situation. We've compiled this list based on multiple sources of reliable data that consider various factors affecting pedestrian safety.

Data Sources

  • Traffic Reports: Government-issued traffic reports often break down incidents by location, offering insights into intersections with high frequencies of pedestrian-involved accidents.

  • Safety Studies: Various transportation agencies and advocacy groups release studies focusing on pedestrian safety. These reports provide detailed analyses of the conditions that make certain intersections more perilous.

  • Police Records: Accident reports from the New York Police Department (NYPD) serve as a valuable resource for identifying areas with high accident rates.

Criteria for Identification

  • Frequency of Incidents: An intersection with a high number of reported accidents involving pedestrians naturally gains priority on our list.

  • Severity of Incidents: The number of fatalities and severe injuries are also key determinants in our rankings.

  • Traffic Volume: Intersections with high volumes of both vehicle and pedestrian traffic are considered riskier due to the increased likelihood of an accident occurring.

Additional Considerations

  • Road Design: Intersections with confusing layouts, inadequate signage, or poor lighting may contribute to their dangerous nature.

  • Public Input: Resident complaints and community forums can offer additional insights into perceived danger, which might not be reflected in official reports.

  • Ongoing Construction: Intersections with active construction sites can temporarily elevate risk levels and were considered when compiling this list.

Being aware of the methodology that shaped this list can offer a deeper understanding of the risks involved. Remember, data is continually updated, so staying informed is crucial for your safety. If you've been involved in an accident, don't hesitate to get the help you need.


Why These Intersections Are Risky

Understanding why certain intersections in New York City are particularly hazardous for pedestrians can help you make better choices when navigating them. The risk factors vary but often include a combination of design flaws, high traffic volumes, and behavioral issues.

High Traffic Volume

  • Intersections with significant volumes of both vehicle and pedestrian traffic are inherently riskier. The constant movement and activity can lead to misunderstandings, missed signals, or quick, often risky, decisions.

Poor Road Design

  • Factors such as inadequate or confusing signage, poorly marked crosswalks, and complicated road layouts can significantly increase the risk of accidents.

Inadequate Safety Measures

  • Lack of effective safety measures, like pedestrian signals, barriers, or traffic calming devices, also contribute to the danger. An absence of these elements can make crossings more perilous.

High-Speed Roads

  • Some intersections are located where roads with high-speed limits intersect with local streets. This speed differential can be a severe risk for pedestrians attempting to cross.

Driver Behavior

  • Unfortunately, instances of aggressive driving, speeding, and distracted driving (like texting) are common factors in pedestrian accidents at these dangerous intersections.

Pedestrian Behavior

  • Likewise, pedestrians can contribute to the risk by jaywalking, ignoring traffic signals, or being distracted while crossing (e.g., using smartphones or headphones).

Seasonal and Time-Related Factors

  • Reduced visibility during evenings, winters, or rainy seasons can exacerbate existing risks. Furthermore, rush hours see an increase in both pedestrian and vehicular traffic, elevating the risk of collisions.

Tourist and Local Foot Traffic

  • In New York City, intersections close to tourist attractions often experience a unique set of challenges. Tourists unfamiliar with the city's traffic patterns may make unpredictable moves, adding another layer of risk.

Ongoing Construction

  • Construction sites near or at intersections can create temporary hazards like narrowed lanes, detours, and obstructions, which can confuse both drivers and pedestrians.

By comprehending the factors that make these intersections dangerous, you can be better prepared and more cautious when you have to pass through them. If you or someone you know has been involved in a pedestrian accident, immediate legal advice can be crucial for understanding your rights and options.


Tips for Pedestrians: How to Navigate Dangerous Intersections Safely

When it comes to pedestrian safety in risky intersections, knowledge is only the first step. The next crucial element is applying precautionary measures to mitigate the risks involved. Here are some practical tips for navigating these dangerous intersections with your safety in mind.

Always Use Designated Crosswalks

  • Cross the street only at designated crosswalks or intersections. It might be tempting to jaywalk, but crossing at marked locations significantly reduces your risk of an accident.

Obey Traffic Signals

  • Always adhere to the pedestrian signals. Wait for the walk signal before crossing, and be sure to complete your crossing before the countdown ends.

Make Eye Contact with Drivers

  • If possible, make eye contact with drivers before crossing, especially those making a turn. This non-verbal communication often ensures that the driver has seen you and is less likely to proceed until you've crossed safely.

Stay Alert and Minimize Distractions

  • Avoid using your phone, earphones, or engaging in any activity that could distract you while crossing. Stay alert to the sounds and sights around you.

Be Visible

  • Wear brightly colored or reflective clothing, especially during nighttime or in poor weather conditions, to make yourself more visible to drivers.

Exercise Extra Caution in Risky Conditions

  • During rainy weather, at night, or in winter months when visibility is compromised, exercise extra care. These conditions make driving more hazardous and may contribute to increased pedestrian accidents.

Look Left, Look Right, Look Left Again

  • Always follow this rule before crossing any street. Check for oncoming traffic from both directions, even on one-way streets.

Don't Assume Drivers Will Stop

  • Even if you have the right of way, never assume that a vehicle will stop for you. Always ensure that vehicles have come to a complete stop before you begin to cross.

Keep an Eye on Turning Vehicles

  • At intersections, be aware of vehicles making turns and keep a safe distance. Drivers may not always yield to pedestrians while making a turn.

Walk, Don't Run

  • Running across an intersection increases the risk of slipping or tripping and doesn't give drivers enough time to react. Always walk at a steady pace.

Armed with these tips, you can better safeguard yourself when crossing some of New York City's most dangerous intersections. Despite all precautions, accidents can still happen. If you find yourself a victim of a pedestrian accident, know that legal help is available to you.


What To Do If You're Involved in a Pedestrian Accident

Despite taking all the safety precautions, accidents can still happen. If you or a loved one is involved in a pedestrian accident in New York City, knowing the right steps to take can be crucial for your well-being and for any subsequent legal actions you may decide to pursue.

Seek Immediate Medical Attention

  • The first priority is your health. Call 911 or have someone do it for you. Even if you feel fine, certain injuries might not manifest symptoms immediately.

Gather Information

  • Collect names, contact details, and insurance information from all parties involved, including any witnesses. If possible, take photographs of the scene, your injuries, and any damage.

File a Police Report

  • Report the incident to the police. This is a critical step, as a police report serves as an official record that may be valuable in any legal proceedings.

Document Medical Treatment

  • Keep records of any medical treatments, diagnoses, prescriptions, or advice you receive. These records can serve as evidence of the extent and impact of your injuries.

Notify Your Insurance Company

  • Report the accident to your insurance company as soon as possible. Avoid giving any statements or signing any documents before consulting with a lawyer.

Consult a Personal Injury Lawyer

  • A qualified attorney can provide legal advice tailored to your situation. From assessing the merits of your case to negotiating with insurance companies, a lawyer can guide you through the entire legal process.

Keep a Record

  • Maintain a journal detailing your recovery process, including any pain or emotional suffering you experience. This can serve as supporting evidence in your case.

Avoid Social Media

  • Refrain from discussing your accident or injuries on social media. Anything you post can potentially be used against you during legal proceedings.

Know Your Rights

  • Familiarize yourself with your legal rights as a pedestrian. This can include your right to compensation for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.

Follow Through with Legal Advice

  • If your lawyer advises you to pursue a legal claim, make sure to adhere to all recommendations and keep all appointments, as this can affect the outcome of your case.

If you've been involved in a pedestrian accident at a dangerous intersection or anywhere else, getting the right legal advice is crucial.


Most Common Injuries in Pedestrian Accidents

Pedestrian accidents often result in severe injuries due to the sheer force involved when a vehicle collides with a human body. Understanding the types of injuries commonly sustained can offer insight into the potential consequences of these accidents. Here are some of the most frequently observed injuries:

Head Injuries

  • Traumatic brain injuries (TBI) are among the most severe outcomes, as they can lead to long-term cognitive issues, memory loss, and emotional distress.

Fractures and Broken Bones

  • Arms, legs, and ribs are commonly fractured during pedestrian accidents, requiring extended periods of treatment and rehabilitation.

Spinal Cord Injuries

  • Collisions can lead to various levels of spinal cord injuries, from minor disc problems to full paralysis.

Soft Tissue Injuries

  • Sprains, strains, and tears in muscles, ligaments, or tendons are common and can cause lingering pain and limited mobility.

Lacerations and Abrasions

  • Cuts and scrapes may seem minor but can lead to infection or scarring if not properly treated.

Internal Injuries

  • Internal bleeding or organ damage are less visible but can be life-threatening if not immediately addressed.

Psychological Trauma

  • The emotional impact of a pedestrian accident shouldn't be overlooked. Symptoms of PTSD, anxiety, or depression are common after such traumatic events.

Fatalities

  • Unfortunately, the worst-case scenario is a loss of life, which leaves families devastated and seeking justice for their loved ones.

If you or someone you know has suffered from any of these injuries due to a pedestrian accident, it's crucial to get medical attention and consult a qualified attorney. Navigating the medical and legal processes can be overwhelming, but help is available.


Conclusion

Navigating the busy streets of New York City as a pedestrian requires constant vigilance, especially at intersections that have a reputation for being particularly hazardous. While city initiatives aim to make these crossings safer, the risk remains significant due to a combination of high traffic volume, poor road design, and sometimes reckless behavior by both drivers and pedestrians.

Understanding the risks involved and how to mitigate them is essential. Following best practices for pedestrian safety can help you navigate these intersections more securely. However, if you find yourself involved in a pedestrian accident, taking the correct immediate steps is crucial for your well-being and any potential legal claims you may want to pursue.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a pedestrian accident, it's essential to consult an experienced New York City personal injury attorney as soon as possible. Legal support can guide you through the complexities of medical treatment, police reports, insurance claims, and potential legal action, ensuring that your rights are protected at every step.

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