FFICE OF THE
March 1, 2013Janette Sadik-KhanCommissionerNew York City Department of Transportation55 Water Street, 9th FloorNew York, NY 10041Dear Commissioner Sadik-Khan,As you know, 6-year-old Amar Diarrassouba was struck and killed by a tractor-trailer yesterdayas he crossed 1
Avenue at East 117
Street, less than half a block from his school, P.S. 155 inEast Harlem. We mourn his passing and our heartfelt condolences go out to his family andfriends.Tragically, Amar is not the only child to be injured or killed in East Harlem in recent years. Asshown by statistics recently released by the Tri-State Transportation Campaign, there were fiveincidents where pedestrians under 15 years of age were killed in Manhattan from 2009-2011 and
of those incidents took place within 7 blocks of P.S. 155.
Despite these tragedies, few traffic-calming devices have been implemented in theneighborhood. For instance, of the 145 leading pedestrian interval signals in Manhattan—whichshow walk signs before showing a green light to traffic, thereby giving pedestrians a chance tobegin crossing the street before cars and trucks make turns across the crosswalk—only two are inEast Harlem (both at the corner of East 135
Street and Madison Avenue).
Furthermore, while many schools have special reduced speed limit signs with flashing lights, nosuch treatment exists near P.S. 155, despite the history of deaths in the neighborhood.