Special NYPD unit examines car accidents for clues to greater safety citywide

About two dozen New York Police Department officers have been devoted specifically to examining car crashes, it was learned late last month.

The move to allocate precious police resources to car accident situations reflects not only a drop in violent crime in New York over the past few years, but also the extensive degree to which car accidents injure or kill New York residents each year.

The head of the NYPD’s Highway Patrol division commented that when crime rates were higher, investigating car crashes was not always a high priority, “but they are now.”

Not every car accident is the result of criminal activity, of course. Some are the result of awful twists of fate or of factors that no one could reasonably have predicted or prevented. Even so, learning more about car accidents and the damage they cause can help city officials devise ways to make us all safer.
Car accidents are different from other causes of death or injury. While violent crime tends to be restricted to certain neighborhoods and disproportionately affects certain segments of the populations, car accidents happen across all areas of the city and affect people from all social strata.

Because we often handle car accident cases, we think it will be interesting to see what this police division learns. Hopefully, useful information that can be applied to the effort to reducing the number of car-crash deaths in New York will be learned.

If you are ever injured in a car accident, you might consider speaking over what happened to you with an attorney.

Source: The New York Times, “Police Unit Taking Closer Look at Deadly Crashes,” J. David Goodman, June 23, 2013

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