MTA bus driver involved in fatal hit-and-run accident
According to the Metropolitan Transit Authority, as of 2014, there were more than 5,700 buses traveling more than 300 routes through the city’s five boroughs. The men and women who drive these buses have difficult jobs and are accountable for the safety of bus passengers as well other drivers, passengers and pedestrians with whom they share the streets.
Earlier this year, a “new traffic-safety law made failing to yield a misdemeanor,” if a driver “injures or kills a pedestrian or cyclist who had the right of way.” The law, which was passed in 2014, has been the subject of a lawsuit against the city which was filed by members of Transport Workers Union Local 100 who argued they should be exempt from the law. In a recent ruling, a judge ruled to amend the law to include the condition that a bus driver can only be charged in the event that he or she fails to “exercise due care.”
Recently, an MTA bus driver was charged with several criminal charges including a misdemeanor for failing to exercise due care after he hit and killed a 70-year-old woman who had the right of way and was crossing the street at an intersection. The bus driver was also charged with leaving the scene of an accident after police were forced to rely on video footage from traffic surveillance cameras to track him down.
This most-recent tragedy involving a MTA bus is an example of the many dangers pedestrians throughout the city face on a daily basis. Traffic accidents involving pedestrians who have the right of way are especially common and drivers who fail to yield to a pedestrian who is attempting to cross the street are at risk for causing accidents that are sure to result in pedestrians suffering serious or fatal injuries.
Source: The New York Times, “M.T.A. Bus Fatally Strikes Woman in Brooklyn; Driver Is Arrested,” Benjamin Mueller and Nate Schweber, Nov. 3, 2015
The New York Times, “New York City Reaches Deal With Bus Drivers Union on Safety Law,” Emma C. Fitzsimmons, Sept. 1, 2015