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Commercial Trucks And NYC Pedestrians: A Fatal Combination

A fatal truck-pedestrian accident in Brooklyn is the third such incident in the past month or so according to Streetsblog and it’s the sixth death involving a tractor trailer and a pedestrian since last summer.

One recent pedestrian accident occurred at the intersection of Flatbush and Fourth Avenues, near Barclays Center. According to witnesses, the truck dragged the victim at least 15 feet and only stopped when alerted by another pedestrian. The driver reportedly said that he had no idea that he had hit anyone.

According to some reports, the pedestrian was crossing the street between parked cars. Eyewitness photos suggest that the trailer was in the crosswalk, forcing the pedestrian to cross elsewhere. Another photo taken by the same eyewitness indicates that the truck was not equipped with crossover mirrors that show drivers what is in front of them. Trucks of this size registered in New York State and operating in New York City are required to have such mirrors. They are also required to have permits to enter the city. It is not known whether the truck, registered to a company in Ellenville, New York, had such a permit.

Trucking companies and businesses argue that removing large trucks from New York City Streets would increase the cost of goods sold in the city. Needing to break loads down to move them to smaller trucks would also delay shipments.

This is not the first pedestrian fatality on Flatbush Avenue. Last year a man was killed by a garbage truck in the same area. The victim of the most recent accident was pronounced dead at the scene. An investigation is ongoing.

Source:, “Brooklyn Victim Is Third NYC Pedestrian Killed by Truck Driver in Five Weeks,” by Brad Aaron, Apr. 3, 2013.


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