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DOT adds new safety measures to dangerous intersection in Glendale after horrific crash

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Cypress Avenue and Cooper Avenue intersection in Glendale (Photo by Joshua Meyer)

The Department of Transportation (DOT) acted quickly Tuesday afternoon, installing safety measures at a notoriously dangerous intersection in Glendale after a gruesome video of a pedestrian being run over not once, but twice, went viral.

The pedestrian, a 57-year-old man, was struck on the corner of Cypress Avenue and Cooper Avenue Saturday, Feb. 12, when he fell to the ground and survived being slowly run over by an SUV. The video was uploaded to Twitter last Monday and has already gotten over 625,000 views. 

Disclaimer: The following video contains graphic footage. Viewer discretion is advised.

DOT installed an “all-pedestrian phase”— meaning all cars stop and pedestrians walk at the same time — at the intersection of Cypress Avenue and Cooper Avenue on Tuesday evening just after local elected officials gathered at the intersection calling for action. DOT also installed “delayed green” signage, meaning the light will not immediately switch to green after the crosswalk signal turns red.

A video taken by resident Mollie Lauffer shows the progress at the intersection. 

Video taken by Mollie Lauffer

“The new crossing has nearly eliminated the constant honking there,” Lauffer said. “You can hear birds chirping. Cities aren’t loud; cars are loud.”

Caroline Shadood is another resident and longtime advocate in the community, who shared how unfortunate it is that a horrific crash like this had to happen before reasonable safety measures were installed. 

“There are ways for the DOT to make intersections safer right now when enough community members come together demanding it,” Shadood said. “I wish it didn’t take the unpaid labor and emotional exhaustion of community members to get it done but I am glad we are here now.”

Shadood said her partner, Jon, and their dog were hit at the Cypress and Cooper Avenue intersection last year. Though it took time, Shadood said the improvements have made a world of difference. 

“It’s really a dramatic improvement to the safety and peacefulness of the neighborhood,” Shadood said. “I can’t begin to describe the magnitude of this signal change for our community and really anyone that uses this corridor — including folks with cars. It’s a huge sigh of relief. The tension is noticeably lower. I’ve never experienced stillness at Cooper and Cypress until this week and I’ve lived around here since 2009.”

DOT Commissioner Ydanis Rodriguez said that traffic violence is a solvable crisis. Under Mayor Eric Adams’ administration, DOT has pledged to improve 1,000 intersections with traffic signals, raised crosswalks and other expanded pedestrian space and visibility measures. 

Rodriguez said to prevent a crash like this from happening again, enforcement is also essential.

“Enforcement will also play a key role in keeping New Yorkers safe,” Rodriguez said. “This crash occurred because two vehicles failed to comply with the law and yield for pedestrians. That’s unacceptable. I have a team at DOT working as we are speaking right now looking at all possible design and signaling improvements that will make this intersection safer.”

A week after the pedestrian was run over, two teens were injured in yet another crash on Cooper Avenue in Glendale. These two crashes have stirred up many safety questions within the community.

“Safety is a top priority for Mayor Adams and for myself — and for all New Yorkers who are committed to turn this city [into] a safer one for pedestrians and cyclists, and especially for our seniors and our children.”

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