(Updates with comments from the mayor, police commissioner)
By Victoria Cavaliere
NEW YORK Feb 21 New York Mayor Bill de Blasio
said on Friday he remained committed to reducing speed limits
and cutting down on traffic deaths in the city, a day after a
local television news crew captured his convoy speeding and
ignoring stop signs.
The driving incident comes after the new mayor rolled out an
extensive, 63-point "Vision Zero" plan this week to tackle
His proposals include reducing many city speed limits to 25
miles (40 km) per hour from 30 miles (48 km) per hour, and
increasing the number of speed-tracking cameras.
"Our lives are literally in each other's hands," de Blasio
said in outlining the plan on Tuesday on Manhattan's Upper West
Side, where three pedestrians were killed last month.
De Blasio's caravan was filmed by a crew from WCBS-TV
driving up to 15 miles (24 km) per hour above the speed limit
and blasting past two stop signs as the mayor sat in the
passenger seat of the lead car.
De Blasio's transportation and security is provided by the
New York City Police Department. The motorcade was captured
making the questionable traffic moves after de Blasio attended
an event to speak about road safety and pothole repairs, WCBS-TV
At a press conference on Friday afternoon, de Blasio refused
to take questions about the driving incident, saying he remained
"committed to safety" and his ambitious new traffic safety
He also said he was "very comfortable" with remarks made by
New York City Police Commissioner Bill Bratton, who told
reporters on Friday he had seen the video of de Blasio's
motorcade and was not "overly concerned by what I saw in the
sense of the speed issue that was raised."
The police issued a statement saying officers in charge of
the mayor's transportation "receive specialized training in
driving, based on maintaining security as well as safety."
"The handling of police vehicles transporting any protectee
is determined solely by police personnel based on their
specialized training in executive protection and professional
judgment," it said.
(Reporting by Victoria Cavaliere; Editing by Ellen Wulfhorst
and Gunna Dickson)