NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — It’s called a dangerous intersection on Manhattan’s East Side, and people who live and work near the 59th Street Bridge exit in question say nothing is being done to protect them.
CBS2’s Marc Liverman has obtained exclusive video of some pretty close encounters.
Take a walk down 60th street between First and Second Avenue in Manhattan enough times and you’re likely to see a driver’s headlights headed straight for you, come within just a few inches of hitting you as you try to cross the street. It happened to Manhattan resident Cameron Oxley.
“He accelerated and I was halfway through. It was really like scary,” Oxley said.
And Oxley isn’t alone. Over the course of a couple hours CBS2’s Liverman watched car after car nearly slam right into pedestrians.
“They come out of nowhere,” Queens resident Alex Shawki said.
“It’s bad,” another person said.
“It’s always super confusing. Whenever you walk you never know if the cars are going to come straight or turn,” Manhattan resident Andrew Thanos added. “I’ve had some instances where cars had to break short.”
The problem is Manhattan-bound drivers exiting the 59th Street Bridge come down the ramp and there’s no stop sign, yield sign or traffic light to slow them down. Approximately 50 feet past the exit ramp, traffic flows right through a crosswalk.
“It’s very very dangerous,” Asceneth Ramirez said. “Look at me. I have two kids, big stroller. They don’t stop.”
“I feel like it’s chaos. I have no idea when to cross,” Oxley added.
Liverman even caught cars blocking the entire intersection. He reached out to the Department of Transportation to find out what’s being done to keep pedestrians safe. The DOT told Liverman it is aware of the problem and is looking into putting up some type of traffic control. But pedestrians said it needs to happen now.
Everyone Liverman spoke with told him the same thing: Something has to be done to make the intersection more safe.
“You need a stop sign or yield sign so that people slow down a little bit,” Shawki said.
“I think there just need to be some sort of signal as people are exiting the bridge,” Queens resident Mike Nicholson added.
Something needs to be done to stop a close call from being just a regular part of someone’s walk home.
Despite the constant close calls at that intersection, the DOT said so far no one has been injured or killed.