With up to 20 speed cameras due to be installed by the end of the year within a quarter-mile of city schools that have documented speeding issues, requests are already pouring in from politicians and community advocates around the city to snag one of the cameras for their neighborhood.
One of those requests is for the intersection at McGuinness Boulevard and Norman Avenue, where P.S. 34 is located.
According to Assemblymember Joseph Lentol, who has requested the camera, having a speed camera there would provide an incentive for drivers to slow down when traveling on McGuinness Boulevard, where four people — one pedestrian and three bicyclists — died out of 57 accidents documented in the area between 2005-2009, according to a report by advocacy group Transportation Alternatives (TA).
“Children leaving school, no matter how many times you tell them to be careful, still run across the street without looking,” said Lentol. “There is no way to have enough police officers at all school zones to enforce the speed limit and protect our children, so this [pilot] program will help to supplement the police force.”
State Senator Daniel Squadron is also calling for more speed cameras in North Brooklyn, as well as elsewhere in the city, stating that “Speed cameras are proven to save lives.”
Brooklyn leads as the borough with the highest incidence rate of death by speeding cars, according to another study by TA, an advocacy group that found that 79 people were killed and over 23,000 injured in 2011. Over 88 percent of Brooklyn drivers also speed past the 30 mph limit — one third of them reaching 40+ mph — the study found.
Their study focused on Bay Ridge, Canarsie, Greenpoint, Midwood, and Williamsburg. The fastest speeds were found to take place at Kent Avenue and Rodney Street in Williamsburg — just a block from where a young Orthodox Jewish couple and their baby, born via emergency Caesarian section — were killed by a speeding driver in March 2013.
Over 113,000 summonses for speeding are issued in NYC every year, but only 2,028 were in Brooklyn.