Since it first crawled out of the primordial ooze by the Brooklyn Navy Yard, the bike lane on Flushing Avenue has proven irresistible to truck drivers looking for a spot to chill….[T]his stretch of Flushing has become so popular with idling truck drivers that the DOT really ought to just paint over the bike lane and put in parking meters.
To be sure, the NYPD doesn’t ignore all traffic violations in this area—they’ve been ticketing cyclists who pedal through red lights at T intersections along Flushing for years now. But despite multiple complaints to 311 (including one I made today), the NYPD seems uninterested or unwilling to ticket idling motorists who force cyclists to merge into a narrow lane of treacherous automobile traffic.
Attorney Steve Vaccaro, who frequently represents cyclists and pedestrians, says, “Chief Chan of the Transportation Bureau said at a press conference yesterday that out of approximately 7,000 bicycle-related tickets recently written as part of the Department’s Vision Zero enforcement program, about 60% went to cyclists and about 40% went to motorists blocking bike lanes. But in my experience, police do not ticket trucks, because they assume they are making deliveries and that it is OK for them to block bikes lanes (something that is not true).”
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