Cyclist Blows Red Light, Causes Crash

A delivery man on a bike collided with an SUV on Sixth Avenue and Dean Street after running a red light.

A wild biker blew through a red light Monday night, colliding with an SUV near the Atlantic Yards construction site, according to police.

Just after 10 p.m. a delivery guy on a bike sped through the intersection of Dean Street and Sixth Avenue, causing an oncoming SUV to swerve and crash. According to police, the driver had the right of way.

“The cyclist was at fault,” a police source said.

Neither the cyclist nor the driver sustained major injuries or required hospital treatment, but the incident highlights the reasoning behind a on cyclists who fail to follow the rules of the road.

In fact, Deputy Inspector John A. Argenziano of the   that most of the cycle summonses issued by the precinct are for the crime of running a red light.

“It looked pretty bad to me, it was a small bike and big SUV,” said Wayne Bailey, a Dean Street resident who stumbled upon the aftermath of the accident just after it occurred.

According to Bailey, the driver of the SUV blamed not only the cyclist, but the Atlantic Yards site construction for the incident.

“He said he didn’t even see the cyclist because of the blue wall where the arena is being built. He said it blocked his view and the bike came out of nowhere,” said Bailey. “The driver was so upset.”

Kevin Beers March 30, 2011 at 12:18 PM
That should be we do deem acceptable....
Lauren Thompson March 30, 2011 at 12:31 PM
How about requiring (or strongly suggesting) that restaurants that deliver by bike equip their delivery people with lights and a safety vest. A helmet would be nice, too. And also review the rules of the road with them. These bikers put their lives at risk every night. I don't order for delivery very often, but I'm considering buying some vests in bulk, and also printing out a Please Be Safe: Rules of the Road flyer, to give to every under-equipped delivery person I meet.
Peter March 30, 2011 at 01:47 PM
Commercial bicyclists (e.g. delivery guys) are required by law to wear helmets. All bicyclists are required to have lights and a bell on their bicycles. Riding on the sidewalk is illegal if you're over the age of 12. NYPD doesn't enforce any of that.
Joanna Smith March 30, 2011 at 02:34 PM
I would like to see similarly detailed coverage of every vehicle vs. vehicle collision that happens in the City on a regular basis. I suspect the bicycle vs. vehicle incidents are a drop in the bucket. Featuring them gives a distorted view of the relative dangers cyclists pose.
Peter March 30, 2011 at 02:48 PM
Amen. Credit to Patch, they at least covered the story of the drunk cop who totaled his car and a police cruiser in a late-night crash while speeding down 5th avenue. Noone else did. Guess they couldn't figure out a way to tie a bike into the story.
Hambone March 30, 2011 at 03:19 PM
In NYC the job is required to provide helmet, lights, bell, rack and brakes. (Ironically, they don't have to provide a bike...)
Hambone March 30, 2011 at 03:28 PM
Nobody has said that the NYPD ought not enforce the laws. (In fact the opposite was said.) Just that they could do it in a way that had a much bigger/better impact on public safety.
Kevin Beers March 30, 2011 at 06:22 PM
You folks are just constantly deflecting the argument. Yes there was a drunk driver who had a terrible accident on 5th avenue. Yes there might be more vehicle versus vehicle accidents. So what? How does that impact on this event? The point is the guy blew through a red light. When these debates started all the bikers denied they ran through red lights. That was a pretty hard argument to sustain. Then the argued that they have to go through red lights to get ahead of traffic. Now you say the problem is deliverymen who don't have lights. Somehow the fact that a drunken cop had an accident on 5th avenue excepts you for responsibility? You must realize how embarrassing your arguments look to anyone not invested in this debate. Sorry but it sounds pretty petulant. "You ran a red light and caused an accident". "Oh yeah well he had an accident cause he was drunk! So there!"
Parksloper March 30, 2011 at 07:15 PM
Typical how the bike zealots at Streetsblog blame the accident on the SUV driver. "SUV Driver Sends Brooklyn Delivery Cyclist to the ER". Pro bike zealots are never in the wrong.
Hambone March 30, 2011 at 08:05 PM
Kevin, why do you think each of these posts ties back to the same discussion you had at some point in the past? Nobody on here has suggested the guy on the bike was not at fault and nobody has said that cyclists of any type obey every traffic rule. That would be absurd. Nobody observes every rule. You seem to be looking for a fight here rather than a discussion.
Peter March 30, 2011 at 08:24 PM
Note that most news headlines (this publication included) usually have a built-in pro-car, anti-bike slant. Streetsblog makes no bones about its' perspective. News orgs generally present themselves as "unbiased" (well, save the NYPost, which has a serious axe to grind with bicyclists and pedestrian plazas for some reason). So what's the problem?
Hambone March 30, 2011 at 08:34 PM
If you read the Streetsblog article you cite it says that nobody had spoken to the guy on the bike. And we know from above there were no witnesses. So if anyone at that point was saying that the accident was because the guy went through a red light it was only the driver of the SUV. With that in mind, "SUV Driver Sends Brooklyn Delivery Cyclist to the ER" doesn't seem so out of line. "SUV Windshield Sends Brooklyn Delivery Cyclist to the ER" might have been more accurate but... I think your characterization of the guy who was hit as a "Pro bike zealot" seems a little over the top. In my experience bicycle delivery guys are a lottery ticket away from being moped delivery guys.
Kevin Beers March 30, 2011 at 08:59 PM
Hambone, it's a but disingenuous to pretend that these posts don't tie back to an ongoing discussion. And yes in fact Peter was trying to pin it on the possibility that the driver was speeding or texting or talking on the phone.
Parksloper March 30, 2011 at 09:02 PM
Um, the problem is the truth. The biker was at fault according to the police but Streetsblog's heading has the SUV at fault. Facts are facts not how bias you are.
Parksloper March 30, 2011 at 09:08 PM
I didn't say the delivery guy who was at fault was a zealot, I said pro-bike people are. Just look at this site for examples ie Peter who wonders if the driver was texting, speeding etc as if the delivery guy couldn't be faulted.
Hambone March 30, 2011 at 09:36 PM
I was poking fun at where you said, "Pro bike zealots are never in the wrong." Peter said, "First things first - this sucks. Whether or not the delivery guy was right or wrong, being on a bicycle and nearly getting killed by an SUV is horrible." Who could argue with that? I've never been hit by an SUV, hell, the only moving thing I was ever hit by while I was on a bike was a deer (long mountain biking at dusk story) but you have to imagine getting hit by an SUV does suck. And why is it not ok to wonder if the driver was speeding or on the phone or anything else? This would not change the fact that a cyclist going through a red light has himself to blame, but when we drive, we also have a duty to exercise caution. Finally, according to the other article, nobody spoke with the cyclist and there were no eyewitnesses. So how do we really know what happened?
Neil Zwillinger March 31, 2011 at 01:00 PM
What really needs to be addressed is the amount of bicyclist, the majority of them delivering food, who ride on the sidewalks. They seem to think that the sidewalk is their personal domain, one of them almost ran down my dog the other night, and that the job of a pedestrian is to get out of their way. It's tough enough navigating city streets, what with texters paying no attention to where they walk or who they walk into, without bicyclists weaving in and out of old ladies with shopping carts.
Kevin Beers March 31, 2011 at 01:20 PM
Just yesterday I encountered a guy (not a deliveryman) riding his bike with his tiny child down the sidewalk on 8th avenue one block from the PPW bike lane. And a couple of days ago I saw one of those spandex clad park biking road warriors riding down PPW in the car lane. Apparently he couldn't be bothered to go over one lane to the other side of the parked cars and use the bike lane. I don't know why because he could have had the bike lane all to himself. I also had to dodge a young lady on a bike running a red light as I was crossing 7th avenue at 6th street by the Barnes and Noble and in Manhattan the same day at 8th street and 5th avenue where that biker was coming up from Washington Square in the wrong direction ( you just don't tend to look in the other direction when crossing a one way street. But I guess bikers would say I have a responsibility to do so) and crossing against the light. That was just one afternoon. I would though cut some slack for the old ladies with their shopping carts. They have to shop. And eat. And the bikers have already expressed their disdain for using Fresh Direct- they use trucks you know.
Hambone March 31, 2011 at 01:57 PM
When I used to group ride a lot we had a saying, "Bikes are the cars on the pathway." It meant treat pedestrians as you would like the car drivers to treat you. So even if they are walking/jogging in the bike only section, or walking three abreast blocking the whole path, be nice. Unless you have a child under 12 on your bike no adult should be on a bike on the sidewalk. I find the bigger issue with delivery guys is the disregard for one way streets.
Kevin Beers March 31, 2011 at 02:32 PM
Thank you Hambone for that comment. It is refreshing to see a comment that shows some acknowledgment and some concern fir pedestrians. If bikers as a group followed that philosophy there wouldn't be a problem. But as you can see by reading any of the bikers' comments on any of these sites that have had a dialogue yours is a rare voice. Anyone who reads the comments with an objective perpective will see a self importance, a self righteousness, a sense of entitlement and an inability to put themselves in the other guy's shoes and it's a pretty easy leap to imagine they would bring that mindset to the road. But thank you for your guideline for riding with pedestrians and please spread that word.
Hambone March 31, 2011 at 02:46 PM
I think that is more about who posts and how people's words are interpreted then how the group feels.
Parksloper March 31, 2011 at 04:09 PM
Nobody is arguing that it is horrible being hit by an SUV (why does the make of the car matter. why not just say a car?....it's a rhetorical question by the way) but in this instance, according to the police, the cyclist is at fault. Of course any intelligent person agrees cars ( and not just SUV's) and other vehicles have a duty to follow the rules of the road. I'm taking the word of the police for now since that is all that we have. We will just have to wait till the cyclist speaks.
Parksloper March 31, 2011 at 04:13 PM
My friend and I have encountered an Asian delivery guy twice at night speeding on the sidewalk and not slowing down. One around 8th and 8th and the other Garfield and 8th. Not riding in the street and stopping at the house. Riding all the way down the sidewalk. No bell or warning. If we hadn't seen him who knows what would have happened.
Parksloper March 31, 2011 at 04:18 PM
I agree. Too bad all bikers aren't like you Hambone. Wait till the weather warms up and head into the park in the evening as my friend and I do and try to cross the road when, as someone hear called them, the spandex ballet rides through. No way are they going to stop or slow down to let people cross. And while it's true pedestrians do walk in the bike lane bikes also come into the pedestrian lane.
Peter March 31, 2011 at 04:30 PM
So I have a question. Let's assume for a moment, that as the story says, and the police determined, that this cyclist was at fault. You get the headline above. If the cyclist wasn't at fault, and it turns out the SUV driver was, would you get the headline, "Driver of SUV blows stop sign, injures Bicyclist?" Or would you get "SUV blows sign, injures bicyclist?" This sounds minor, but it's an important point. In the former, the fault is assigned to the man or woman behind the wheel. In the latter, it's assigned to an inanimate object. The reason I ask is because of this headline in a sister Patch publication for Carroll Gardens: Woman Killed by Van on Columbia Street http://carrollgardens.patch.com/articles/woman-killed-by-van-on-columbia-street This poor woman wasn't killed by a van. She was killed by the person operating the van. Whether the driver is at fault is a different issue. But headlines like this are commonplace when it's a vehicle involved.
Hambone March 31, 2011 at 04:38 PM
It's like they always say, "Guns don't kill people, bullets do."
Kevin Beers March 31, 2011 at 04:46 PM
@ Peter- What if ? What if? What if? My god the more you post the more absurd it gets. I guess you have some sort of gotcha ( though I don't know what it is) that they said she was killed by a van rather than a driver. Good job Colombo. But hey, what if there was no driver? What if it was the van that did it? There are killer vans out there! (And this is not meant to diminish the tragic death of that poor woman).
Peter March 31, 2011 at 04:58 PM
Kevin, I'm just making a point about journalism and how things are written, nothing more. I'm not looking to paint an entire class of people with a broad brush, I'm just asking for consistency in reporting.
Hambone March 31, 2011 at 05:18 PM
Peter, how about, "Driver Blows Stop Sign, Windshield Injures Cyclist" OR "Driver Blows Stop Sign, Front Bumper and Pavement Injure Cyclist"?
Peter March 31, 2011 at 05:40 PM
I was actually hoping for: "Cyclist blows stop sign, Hit by driver unable to avoid him. Cyclist discovers laws of physics not in his favor."


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