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To tackle congestion, city ups ‘don’t block the box’ enforcement

NYPD officers “will be out in force” to issue summonses for box blockers at 50 key intersections across the city.
As part of the ‘Clear Intersections’ initiative to battle congestion, 50 intersections across the city will see increased ‘Don’t block the box’ enforcement. Violators could face fines and points on their license. (iStock)
As part of the ‘Clear Intersections’ initiative to battle congestion, 50 intersections across the city will see increased ‘Don’t block the box’ enforcement. Violators could face fines and points on their license. (iStock)

Box blockers beware: The NYPD is increasing enforcement of “don’t block the box” street signs at 50 key intersections across the city, officials announced Monday.

Entitled “Clear Intersections,” the move is the latest in a series of initiatives announced last year to address New York City’s congestion issues.

“Blocking the box is one area where focused NYPD enforcement can and will make a big difference to keep traffic moving around hotspots in every borough,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said in a statement.

“Drivers who block intersections are contributing to overall congestion, and their disregard of this particular traffic rule comes at the expense of other drivers, including emergency vehicles,” said NYPD Chief of Transportation Thomas Chan. “Additionally, pedestrians are endangered when they have to navigate between vehicles that are blocking crosswalks.”

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NYPD officers, Chan added, “will be out in force” issuing summonses to box blockers. Fifty additional uniformed officers have been hired to handle the uptick in enforcement, and violators will face minimum fines of $115 as well as possible points that could result in the loss of their driver’s license.

As part of the Clear Intersections project, the city’s Department of Transportation installed special markings or updated signage at the 50 hotspot intersections, which are in the vicinity of river crossings, highway on-ramps and commercial centers.  

“We know traffic can be frustrating, but blocking the box just causes gridlock for everybody — bus riders, pedestrians, cyclists and your fellow motorists. Please be courteous and safe — and don’t block the box,” urged DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg.

To view a complete list of the intersections that will see increased enforcement of box blockers, visit nyc.gov.