You Can’t Even Say “Speed Kills” Anymore

The aftermath--the car back to where it started--sort of.

Some force on the planet was clearly at work, other than the combustion engine of the late model Infiniti G37 hard-top convertible coupe–the car that helped save three lives today. At about 8 a.m. on Saturday, August 20, the young woman driving this car (with a Florida license plate), traveling westbound on Newport Avenue in Belle Harbor, apparently skidded and lost control just east of the busy intersection of Newport and Beach 129 Street. The vehicle smacked into the brick retaining wall of the home on the northwest corner of Beach 128 Street, and then flipped onto its hard-top, which folds into the trunk when it’s in convertible mode. Fortunately for the driver and passengers, the top was not down.

The impact of the crash and the flip onto its lid was enough to shred this two-ton, $50,000 car into pieces. It was quite an amazing thing to see and hear.  The witnesses closest to the scene (I was there within a minute or so of the impact), said that it was strictly a one-car mishap–there were no other cars nearby at the moment of the crash except one traveling northbound on Beach 128 Street, sitting at the stop sign waiting to cross Newport.  That driver got quite an eyeful!

Firefighters lift the car during the rescue effort.

The young woman driver and her two male passengers were removed from the car by firefighters.  Alive.  It took over a half-hour to get the last passenger out.  I noticed when they removed the driver that she was not wearing shoes. My father always warned his children that it’s unsafe to drive a car (or ride a bike) in bare feet (or flip-flops). Guess he was right about that.  At least the driver was wearing a seat belt.

I never dreamed you could escape a crash like this alive.

Reminder to neighbors and visitors–the New York City speed limit on residential streets is 30 m.p.h.  Let’s all try to respect it. Following the lead of other places like Canada and England that have lower speed limits, New York City is testing pilot projects to reduce the speed limit to 20 m.p.h., which I personally favor.   If there are more accidents like the one this morning, you can expect increasing pressure for such changes.  The site of this unfortunate crash is one of the busiest bus stops on the west end, weekdays.

It’s a good thing it was a Saturday.

Text and photos copyright 2011 Vivian R. Carter


About rockviv

You've entered the cyber-locale of Vivian Rattay Carter. I blog with the username "rockviv," short for Rockaway Vivian. Rockaway (Queens County) is one of New York City's most fascinating neighborhoods. I have owned a home on the peninsula since 1994, and worked there, full-time, for almost a decade. I've been working, traveling, and doing research around the New York metro area since late 2012, but the Rock remains the muse of my writing. With degrees from Northwestern (journalism), Brooklyn College (elementary education), and Fordham Law, I find I have a lot to say about this great planet we share. I am proud to have served, for several years, as a board member of Rockaway Civic Association (formerly Rockaway Park Homeowners' and Residents) and a lay leader of First Congregational Church of Rockaway Beach, United Church of Christ. I'm a member and supporter of many New York cultural, educational, and ecology groups. Although I have produced written work for publication in multiple genres, beginning with poetry in the early 1970's, my first non-fiction book, Images of America: Rockaway Beach, was published by Arcadia in June, 2012. My monthly opinion column, Rock Solid, appeared in The Wave, Rockaway's weekly community newspaper, from April 2009 through October, 2012, and I contributed numerous other articles and photos from 1999-2012. From the home page, click on the "Publications/Press-Links" tab for links to these articles The views expressed here are my own, and do not necessarily coincide with the views of any of the organizations that publish my work, or the groups I assist and support. Here's to independent voices!
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