The Newtown Pentacle

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Posts Tagged ‘Accident

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There was quite a hullabaloo, here in Astoria.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

One received a text from a neighbor on the night of October 30th that there had been a vehicle collision involving the local gendarmes here in Astoria, so I grabbed the camera and headed down to take a look at what happened.

The NYPD unit involved was from the local precinct, the 114,  and they had collided – at speed- with a civilian vehicle at the intersection of 45th street here on Broadway.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Given that I’m a “yenta” and the whole neighborhood knows it, the neighbors began relating the story to me.

Apparently, the NYPD unit was in one of those big hurries that they periodically display, the kind when they don’t have their sirens or lights on. My understanding is that this is procedure when they’re trying to catch someone surreptitiously by sneaking up on them, or they’re enroute to assist another officer who is in a dicey situation.

Observationally, when Cops blow a light just cause they want to, they perform what could be best described as a rolling stop while doing so. They can also park pretty much anywhere they want to, and I see both as perks.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

One of the local Greeks informed me that he had witnessed the incident. The cops were moving through a red light at the corner of 45th street and Broadway at a considerable velocity when they contacted the front end of a sedan which was proceeding at speed through the green light. They tore the front end of the civilian car up, but neither car’s occupants were seriously hurt. That’s what the Greek guy said.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

That’s the bumper of the sedan, which was being operated by a fairly young guy who had two passengers with him. They were instructed to park around the corner, and seemed – to me at least – as quite anxious. On Broadway itself, there were multiple NYPD people investigating the event. There were ambulances, looking loo civilians like me, and the usual emergency crew that the City’s got.

Of course the three kids were anxious, how would you feel if you had just rammed a cop car?

– photo by Mitch Waxman

I ran into a couple of officers from the 114 a couple of days later (long story) and inquired as to the condition and health of their comrades. They informed that the two officers in the unit were fine, but had taken a couple of days off to recuperate nevertheless. No word on the three kids, however.

My personal belief is that all five participants in the accident probably had to go shopping for new underwear.


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Written by Mitch Waxman

November 11, 2016 at 11:00 am

writhing mass

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In today’s post- a vehicle accident in DUPBO, LIC.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Happily perambulating upon Jackson Avenue in venerable Hunter Point recently, a cacophony of automotive horns heralded my arrival in DUPBO- Down Under the Pulaski Bridge Onramp- at the corner of Vernon and Jackson. I have actually used Vernon Jackson as an alias, in the past, it should be noted. To my ears, Vernon Jackson is an extremely credible sounding name, the sort of handle which a bounty hunter or hard hitting journalist might be blessed with.

At any rate, there was an awful traffic tie up, and even the legendary patience of the Queens driver was wearing thin.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Motorists in Queens, it should be pointed out, drive angry. The slightest transgression- not immediately hitting the gas at the precise second which a red light turns green, slowing down for any reason, allowing a passenger to debark the automobile- is greeted by an enthusiastic usage of the horn. There is also a societal taboo against going around an obstacle, and one is obliged to sit and honk at an obstruction until it is cleared away. In the case of this particular tie up, it seemed that an “accidental” had occurred.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Such “accidentals” are common, here in this place where highways and rail systems converge upon and feed into those narrow corridors which allow egress to the Shining City. Literally hundreds of thousands of vehicles cross western Queens on any given day, the odds that collisions wouldn’t proliferate would be astronomical. When I say “collision,” it is because I presume that both of the unfortunate conveyances found at the center of this scene were in motion.

Were one of them static, it would instead be an “allision.”

– photo by Mitch Waxman

The honking continued as I wove my way though tangle, on my way to Greenpoint. During my walk from Astoria, a roughly one and one half mile saunter accomplished in roughly forty minutes, I observed two vehicle accident scenes like this. One wonders if there is some database out there which describes the quantity of vehicular incidents in any given neighborhood?

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Want to see something cool? June 2013 Walking Tours-

The Poison Cauldron Saturday, June 15, 2013
Newtown Creek walking tour with Mitch Waxman and Atlas Obscura, tickets now on sale.

Kill Van Kull– Saturday, June 22, 2013
Staten Island walking tour with Mitch Waxman and Working Harbor Committee, tickets now on sale.

The Insalubrious Valley Saturday, June 29, 2013
Newtown Creek walking tour with Mitch Waxman and Newtown Creek Alliance, tickets now on sale.

Written by Mitch Waxman

May 29, 2013 at 12:15 am

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– photo by Mitch Waxman

Pulsing and pallid, that corpulent jelly which comprises my physical domain and imprisons my conscious mind was carrying me down Jackson Avenue in Long Island City and past the fabled Court Square Diner, whereupon a face melting realization of a recent vehicular disaster confronted me. It would seem that the MTA department of the municipality has one less truck in its fleet roster.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

As painful as it would be for them to encounter a creature such as myself, contact was made with the MTA employees who were vouchsafing the wreck while awaiting a tow vehicle which would secure its disposition.

Note: It isn’t fair to inflict my nauseous presence on the unsuspecting innocents who surround me, nor is it alright to ask them to endure the many disgusting qualities of what might be described as my “vocalizations.” Selfishly, I elected to attempt contact with one of the humans, in an attempt to find out what happened. Apologies offered to all offended parties. Don’t hurt me.

Queries as to the well being of the driver were answered by assurances of continuing good health, but adherence to an institutional policy which required visiting a hospital to professionally confirm and assess said status was obeyed and that was where the driver found himself.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

A smell of refined petroleum derivates hung in the air, and once contact with this clearly shaken employee of the great human hive was reliably completed, my camera found itself employed. Indications offered by that stalwart representative opined that the municipal truck was operated in accordance with traffic regulation, but that another large vehicle was not, which resulted in a collision.

The area is well patrolled by security cameras, one would presume this will be an easy supposition to corroborate thusly.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

The reportage continued that the MTA truck had careened off the second vehicle and the driver lost control of the heavy vehicle. The truck’s wild course carried it away from the equator of the street and in the process it eliminated a metal lamp post and crashed up on the pedestrian lane, known colloquially and conventionally as the sidewalk.

Nervous anticipation nagged at me, as wild paranoid wonderings about sparks falling from the elevated subway tracks mixing with… the petroleum vapors… no… such things do not happen… At this moment, my headphones were back in place and playing through a long list of songs- thats when this random ditty started piping directly into my auditory orifices.

I spun around and started walking toward Astoria in a loose dog trot.

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