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Brooklyn parents, teachers fear local drivers

Two Dyker Heights schools report unsafe drivers posing serious threats to their students' safety.

Christa Mcauliffe Intermediate School, where two children were reportedly struck by cars in the last year and a half. Credit: Google. Christa Mcauliffe Intermediate School, where two children were reportedly struck by cars in the last year and a half. Credit: Google.

Parents and teachers at schools in Dyker Heights are apparently fearful for their children's safety around local motorists, according to a report from Brooklyn Daily.

Vincent D. Grippo Elementary School principal Jayne Marie Capatenakis recounted an incident several years ago that resulted in a student losing a foot after being struck by a car at 65th Street and Fort Hamilton Parkway.

And Grippo at least has a crossing guard at Ninth Avenue: as a middle school, nearby Christa Mcauliffe Intermediate Schoolon 65th Street between 10th and 11th avenuesis ineligible for crossing guards.

Christa Mcauliffe assistant principal Bill Nicoll said that cars have struck two students in the past year and a half alone, though both survived.

"You'll have people who can tell we're having a fire drill, and they're beeping the horn at us, yelling, 'Hey, get out of the way'," Nicoll said.

Fire drills are also problematic for Grippo, according to Capatenakis, where people often try to pull sudden U-turns.

Since they can't get crossing guards, Nicoll reportedly asked the Department of Transportation for "No U-Turn" signs, speedbumps, flashing lights, and a four-way stop near the school to try to slow reckless drivers.

"What we get is they're 'doing studies,'" Nicoll said. "A study does me no good."

"I know we don't want to disrupt the flow of traffic, but I think that's a small price to pay for saving a kid's life someday," he added.

A Department of Transportation spokesperson reportedly told Brooklyn Daily that the DOT is looking into options like repainting the lanes and creating left turn bays along the roadway between Ninth and 13th avenues.

Follow Danielle Tcholakian on Twitter @danielleiat

 
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