Safety Corridor Proposed For Southern State Parkway Amid Concerns About Deadly Crashes

A deadly stretch of a Long Island parkway could soon be subject to hefty driver fines for speeding and other infractions. Lawmakers in Albany are proposing creating what they call a highway safety corridor on the Southern State Parkway; CBS2's Carolyn Gusoff reports.

Video Transcript

- Deadly stretch of parkway on Long Island could soon be the place where drivers get hefty fines for speeding and other infractions.

- Lawmakers in Albany proposing creating what they call a highway safety corridor on the Southern State Parkway. CBS 2's Caroline Gusoff reports.

CAROLINE GUSOFF: A dozen roadside memorials on any given day line the Southern State Parkway, dubbed Blood Alley through Nassau County for good reason. Decades of tragedies, wrong way crashes, impaired, distracted, and aggressive driving crashes, trucks hitting overpasses.

- Trying to get out. Everybody get out.

- [BLEEP] off the bus.

CAROLINE GUSOFF: In just the last two years, 16 fatalities and 1,700 crashes. Some blamed the road itself, built a century ago, intended for far less capacity. Others point to dangerous drivers.

- They just serving in and out like we're in a track race or something.

- You do see people really, really speeding.

- It could be the road. It bends and turns.

CAROLINE GUSOFF: Lawmakers blame both and propose a new approach, a bill in Albany called SOS, Safety On the Southern State.

JOHN BROOKS: The truth of the matter is most of what we see out here on the Parkway is human behavior.

CAROLINE GUSOFF: The pilot program, a first in New York, would designate a safety corridor, with special signage or technology warning of a danger zone.

MICHELLE SOLAGES: It's just smart. We cannot see another death. We cannot see another injury here and just leave and say, oh well. It's human error. We have the ability to save lives.

MARC HERBST: It's time to stop the carnage and stop building memorials and start building highway improvements and safer driving.

CAROLINE GUSOFF: At the same time, they await results of a study on ramp safety to prevent drivers from entering the wrong way. That could include camera enforcement. Safety corridors have been used for years around the nation, including New Jersey. But statistics show they tend to lose effectiveness over time as the public gets used to the signage and begins to ignore it. That's why the plan includes enforcement and the doubling of fines along the infamous stretch. In Valley Stream Long Island, Carolyn Gusoff, CBS 2 News.

- The exact location of a new safety corridor would be determined by the New York State DOT after reviewing collision data.