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New York’s de Blasio looks to Stockholm for road safety tips

A street in Stockholm. Sweden has aimed for zero traffic fatalities since 1997. (Román Emin/ flickr/ cc)

To achieve his goal of zero traffic fatalities by 2024, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has turned to Stockholm for ideas. Matt Flegenheimer reports in the New York Times that Stockholm, along with the rest of Sweden, is considered an international leader in protecting drivers and pedestrians.

The Swedes have reduced traffic fatalities to an “international low” with measures that include reduced speed limits and median barriers. There’s less emphasis in Stockholm on education and enforcement exercises such as ticketing jaywalkers, which are viewed as ineffective at altering behavior.

Whether de Blasio can adapt Stockholm’s traffic calming techniques for New York is uncertain, the article notes. New York City’s population almost matches the entire population of Sweden. Some concepts that work well in Stockholm, such as roundabouts, are seen as impractical for New York’s congested streets.

The mayor’s ideas include slow zones, wider parking lanes and black box data recorders in taxicabs, the Times reports. Click here and here for more details on de Blasio’s Vision Zero Action Plan, issued in February. 

New York Times

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