‘Something needs to be done’: Dyker Heights lawmakers and activists demand improved traffic safety

Concilman Justin Brannan speaks at a press conference on June 8, demanding that DOT increase traffic control in Dyker Heights.
Courtesy of Brannan’s office

Buckle up!

Dyker Heights residents want to put the brakes on car crashes and reckless driving. After Southern Brooklyn saw three collisions last weekend, state Sen. Andrew Gounardes and Councilman Justin Brannan joined local activists in demanding that the city Department of Transportation act fast.

“Community members have been raising a red flag about traffic safety in this area for years now,” Gounardes said at a June 8 press conference. “We call on DOT to do everything in their power to stop these preventable traffic collisions.”

Brannan believes the recent crashes prove that action must be taken.

“Clearly, something needs to be done. We don’t have time to wait for more studies when people’s lives are on the line,” he said. “Whether it’s more speed bumps, more enforcement, traffic lights, flashing beacon lights, stop signs — whatever it is, we need to exhaust every option and put everything on the table. The streets of Dyker Heights need attention immediately and we need to make these streets safer for everyone. Life can’t wait.”

Dyker Heights residents complained about speeding drivers and a lack of traffic lights, stop signs, or law enforcement in the neighborhood, particularly on 10th and 11th avenues between 75th and 85th streets.

“People are becoming being badly injured,” said Denise Cangemi, a community activist.

Standing around her, some attendees carried signs that read, “Drive like your kids live here.”

“Hearing the frequent sound of automobiles collide is a reminder of how those who can do something about this issue aren’t doing anything at all,” Cangemi said.

Community Board 10’s district manager joined the fight for safer streets, citing an emphasis on protecting the neighborhood, particularly its youngest and oldest residents.

“We stand with neighbors who are seeking to make this area safer for all users of the roadway, especially its seniors and young children who cross 10th and 11th avenues everyday,” Josephine Beckmann said. “We request the Department of Transportation to prioritize this study in light of recent crashes, ask the local precinct to help enforce speeding and urge all users of the roadway to be diligent.”

Reach reporter Rose Adams at radams@schnepsmedia.com or by calling (718) 260–8306.
State Sen. Andrew Gounardes speaks at the June 8 press conference, demanding that DOT increase traffic control in Dyker Heights.
Courtesy of Gounardes’ office

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