DOT makes safety improvements after death of 7-year-old girl

The New York City Department of Transportation has taken measures to improve safety at the Bath Beach intersection where a 7-year-old girl was struck and killed by an armored truck last month.

Sama Ali was crossing the intersection at Bath Avenue and Bay 23rd Street when she was killed on Sept. 28. The driver remained at the scene and no charges were filed.

“Following the fatality, DOT installed an LPI at this location, and we are looking into possible next steps for the surrounding area,” said a DOT spokesperson.

An LPI, or leading pedestrian interval, is an adjustment to signal timing that gives pedestrians a head start and can reduce collisions by up to 13 percent.

Friends and family left candles and flowers in memory of Sama Ali.  Photo courtesy of State Senator Andrew Gounardes

State Senator Andrew Gounardes and Councilmember Justin Brannan asked for the LPI and for a traffic study and large-scale traffic safety improvements in the area.

“We need a constantly proactive DOT that will do everything in their power to prevent traffic deaths like the absolutely tragic loss of Sama Ali,” Gounardes said. “While this is a step in the right direction, we also need a full traffic study to ensure we are taking every step imaginable to prevent another traffic death from occurring in this neighborhood. Having lost two children in just the past two years to traffic violence is unthinkable.”

In May 2019, 3-year-old Emur Shavkator was struck and killed by a van as he was making a turn from Bay 25th Street onto Benson Avenue.

“While the addition of the LPI at Bay 23rd is a welcome safety measure, it’s sadly too late for Sama Ali and her family,” Brannan said. “We have lost two children in the last two years to traffic violence in Bath Beach. While the community continues to mourn their loss, it is imperative that DOT enacts a total study of Bath Beach traffic and come up with safety solutions that spare more loss of life.”

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.