The first cyclist to die this year has led City Councilman Ydanis Rodriguez to call for safety guards on all trucks and trailers moving through crowded city streets.
Bushwick resident Hoyt Jacobs, 36, was killed in Long Island City Saturday night around 7:15 p.m. when the driver of a private sanitation truck hit him while making a right turn onto 41st Avenue from Vernon Boulevard. Jacobs was struck by the truck’s driver-side rear wheels, an NYPD spokesman said. The driver stayed on scene and was not arrested or issued a summons, according to the NYPD.
Safe streets advocates and Rodriguez, the council’s transportation committee chairman, called for mandatory side guards for large vehicles that would cover Department of Sanitation and private garbage trucks, delivery trucks and tractor trailers.
“This death, though disheartening, will spur the Council to action to pass legislation that will require the installation of truck side guards,” Rodriguez said in a statement. “Side guards [are] a proven method of increasing the safety of our roadways.”
Paul Steely White, executive director of Transportation Alternatives, said Jacobs’ death was preventable and that cyclist deaths and injuries disproportionately involve large heavy commercial vehicles.
While the de Blasio administration’s Vision Zero street safety efforts led to pedestrian fatalities plunging to 134 deaths last year, bicyclist deaths went up to 20 in 2014, compared to 12 the year before.
De Blasio’s 63-point Vision Zero plan calls for The Department of Citywide Administrative Services to recommend rear wheel side guards for city-regulated vehicles.
“We are actively working to increase the use of side guards in city,” said Wiley Norvell, a spokesman for de Blasio.