New York City has thousands of dangerous and blind intersections. The intersection at 15th Street and Fulton Street in Lower Manhattan has a blind pedestrian signal sign that is very difficult to see if you’re not in a fixed line of sight to the roadway.
The lack of vision makes 15th Street and Fulton Street among the deadliest intersections in Manhattan. Last year, a pedestrian was killed at the intersection on 30th Street.
West left. Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images
Among the proposed solutions to the situation is a pedestrian light replacement. However, in this case, workers did not actually change the existing sign. Instead, scaffolding has been set up on Fulton Street to conceal the new sign.
This creates a safety issue when cars trying to go through 15th Street, and the intersection at 15th Street, and then turn left on to Fulton Street. Cars going straight on Fulton Street can’t see the sign, and drivers have reported hitting pedestrians trying to cross the street.
The Observer spoke to two people who witnessed the accident and the new construction: 28-year-old Armando Tejeda, and 33-year-old Sydney Pepper from Lower Manhattan.
“I was driving to work on the corner to meet my friend,” said Tejeda. “A car hit a person crossing the street at Fulton and Fulton.”
While Pepper and Tejeda both said they saw the incident and that the pedestrian survived, Pepper said he saw part of the accident and that he heard a driver asking “What happened?” The driver was driving too fast for it to be a traffic stop, Pepper said.
When asked if he thought they would install the new sign at the same time as the building, Dara Gabers of the FDNY responded that “if the emergency department deems it necessary to put the scaffolding, that’s what we will do.”
We talked to the driver who hit the person crossing the street to see if she thought she would put up the same sign, but her reaction was nearly identical to an ambulance driver who told us that in their experience, the signs in New York City “are usually retrofitted on a timely basis.”