Bratton Lowballs NYC Jaywalking Summonses

Thursday, March 13, 2014 - 01:00 PM

Signs warning pedestrians not to jaywalk on the Upper West Side (Kate Hinds/WNYC)

Worried about jaywalking tickets? NYPD commissioner Bill Bratton has three words for you: “Get over it.”

Speaking on WPIX Thursday morning, Bratton said that in a city of 8.5 million people, officers have given about 300 tickets to jaywalkers this year.

But numbers provided to WNYC by the police department tell a slightly different story. The department issued 452 jaywalking summonses in January and February, fifty percent more than the total Bratton cited. That’s still a tiny number in a city where jaywalking is treated as a birthright. But it’s also close to the number written in 2013, citywide: 531.

So while most jaywalkers will probably still get away with it, the NYPD is definitely writing more summonses to pedestrians.

Bratton also said that police will be focusing on “so-called quality of life issues” on the subway, including “acrobats and aggressive begging.”

WNYC has reached out to the NYPD regarding the discrepancy, and has not yet received a response. 


Comments [13]

Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY

Richard, by that logic, motorists should be allowed to go on a red light for the same reasons, but I don't see hear that happening. Why should other groups such as your's get special treatment to the laws when others' don't? This is where I call the double standard and use the Animal Farm reference. If this is allowed, it will just be creating a slippery slope for others to demand special treatment of the laws, so I would rather that all groups should follow every letter of the on a regular basis.

Mar. 15 2014 02:55 PM
Richard from Upper West Side

Personally, I believe all modes (walk/bike/car) should follow the rules, but the laws for jaywalking and cycling should be revised to work like traffic YIELD signs: pedestrians should be allowed to cross on a red light IF no traffic's approaching. In the same way, cyclists should be allowed to roll through a red light IF there's no oncoming pedestrian or vehicular traffic. That's just common sense behavior; why make it illegal?

Mar. 15 2014 11:14 AM
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY

First of all, enough with the whining that the police are now enforcing the laws against jaywalking. Compared to what we motorists get in fines, it's way lower and probably a slap on the wrist if you ask me. When you really look at it, this is just the idea of having all groups following the rules. Why should jaywalking be legal in NYC when it's not anywhere else? Do any of you really have a problem just waiting for the walk signal? Are any of you in hurry to get somewhere that you couldn't just take extra time to leave? Then again, explaining why the enforcement is needed is sort of the equivalence of trying to get the Muslim Brotherhood to accept Israel as an existing nation for the Jews, and don't ask me what's behind that, because you would feel better not knowing that unless you can take that explanation. As for helping with traffic signals, just fix the timing of the lights. Doing this can be done faster, costs less, and won't require any redesigning of any streets, plus this worked very well when this was done in Seoul not that long ago. The only reason why this is so highly opposed, especially by the anti-car fanatics, is because this makes sense in that they can't do it their way to promote what they want.

Mar. 14 2014 07:33 PM
AMHess from Harlem

The whole concept of "jaywalking" needs to be reexamined. Pedestrians have as much right to the street as anyone else but are given a tiny amount of space and in many intersections only a few seconds of crossing time. Intersections should be redesigned to create shorter crossing distances and slower traffic speeds, and anyone who speeds or fails to yield to a pedestrian should be ticketed and their license revoked for repeat offenses.

Remember, the majority of pedestrians are hit in the crosswalk while crossing with the light.

Mar. 14 2014 03:50 PM
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY

How about instead of giving excuses to why jaywalking shouldn't be enforced more, give reasons instead? Just acting remotely defensive or trying to talk about cars shows how some of you like to dodge the real issue. From my perspective, jaywalking is just another way one can actually place themselves into harm's way, but they will always be seen as martyrs to anti-car fanatics like those on Streetsblog and Transportation Alternatives. Seriously, acting like victims to the rules only adds more fuel to the fire of those that oppose your ideas. Just acting black and white is what puts away those that are undecided or even on the fence. Your attitudes is exactly why I give the reference to Animal Farm, because you feel that only one group should be subject to follow every letter of the law, while another is exempt from all of them. To quote Confucius, "Respect is something one must earn, not demand." Overall, if you don't practice what you preach, you have no moral legitimacy to tell others what to do, and that will make you feel like a parent who tells their children not to smoke when in fact they are smoking themselves hence the double standard.

Mar. 14 2014 03:24 PM

No other American city has pedestrian density approaching NYC.

To say that people in walkable cities fail to complain about jaywalking tickets is B.S. The reality is that they are just rare. In other cities, few people walk period outside the core.

Jaywalker vs reckless driver are not equivalent. The law should focused on trained, tested, licensed drivers. An anti-jaywalking campaign is useless in NYC due to how our city is designed. It's dense and too much space is allocated towards automobiles. Also consider a pedestrian standing around versus a driver sitting in an automobile with climate control, entertainment and producing little personal mobility.

As for the bikes Martha, are you serious...? Smacks head!!!

Mar. 13 2014 09:15 PM
Martha from Brooklyn

Enforce the new law against electric bicycles.

Mar. 13 2014 07:56 PM
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY

I don't see what is the problem with cracking down on jaywalking and why some are so bent out of shape on this. There are many other cities all across the nation and even the world that do take these actions, so this is nothing new. I have even been to a number of other cities that do this, and I don't hear anyone complaining about the laws on jaywalking. What is wrong with waiting for the walk signal? Are some afraid that it will make them part of the system that they are trying to fight? In reality, jaywalking is actually illegal in NYC, it just needs to be enforced more, so quit crying foul on this. If we motorists have to follow every letter of the law, so should the rest of you. Just go back to that car hating website known as Streetsblog if you can't take the heat. Please understand that the only way for safe streets is for ALL groups to follow the rules, not just a select group.

Mar. 13 2014 07:39 PM

96th ST & Broadway shows current bad re-design. Subway entrances removed from the sidewalk exposing pedestrians to 2 left turn lanes/lights & no way to tell when the cars will start their turns.

Mar. 13 2014 07:15 PM

So this is what DeBlasio's "anti-traffic death" schtick was really about? Stop and frisk but now you get a ticker too? Raising revenue on the back of the poor? If you want to stop traffic death you need to crackdown on drivers not pedestrians. DeBlasio is the most bogus guy since...Obama, I guess. American democracy is so fake, no matter who you elect you get the same thing, the short end of the stick.

Mar. 13 2014 06:59 PM
Mark Schuyler from Brooklyn

Redesign the streets AFTER replacing DOT staff leaving or retired with Pedestrian and walking-expert staff. Conduct pedestrian counts and study vehicle-pedestrian interactions, bicycles included. Enforce community-building and ticket or limit events that create, enable or perpetuate poor interactions.

Mar. 13 2014 05:58 PM
Richard Katz

speed bumps!!!

Mar. 13 2014 04:12 PM

Redesign the streets and jaywalking may seem less attractive. That means shorter crossing distances, midblock crosswalks, longer crossing intervals, all-way reds, diagonal intersection crossings, calmed traffic.

As it stands, the game is rigged in favor of the driver in a city full of pedestrians. Until then, keep your damn tickets to yourself Bratton, NYC IS NOT LA.

Mar. 13 2014 03:43 PM

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